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Introductions and Icebreakers

BE CoachingI started working with a new company in 2015 and was surprised by the lack of personal introductions individuals made as I walked the halls of the company.  First instincts of course as a human hmm I wonder what’s wrong with me?  And then my thoughts focused on folks don’t like change, folks are wary of the new gal on the block, lots of folks tend to be introverted and its hard to step outside their comfort zone. Perhaps, they really do want to meet me and are unsure how to make the approach.

It’s a new year and I’ve made a resolution to step up and make sure I’m the one breaking the ice and introducing myself.

Being intentional to reach out to others and learn more about them is a goal I’ve set, in order, to create a more successful team environment.  In addition, the company shares a monthly birthday list. My goal: to send a quick birthday email to each person on the list this year. What a simple yet fun way to connect with new co-workers.

When leading a meeting it will be important to go around the room or table and have each person introduce themselves, even, if the individuals have worked with each other for years.  Adding a twist will create camaraderie and allow people to learn something new about their teammates.  One of the most basic icebreakers is having everyone say a few tings about themselves.  It gives everyone an opportunity to learn one another’s names, as well as a few interesting facts about the person, such as countries visited, favorite food, color or music they like to listen to.  Have fun and get creative with the facts that are going to be shared-the more obscure the facts usually the more engaged everyone becomes.

Tailor your icebreaker/introductions depending on the size of the group.  When hosting a large group consider the Talk Show Icebreaker, for this game you will want to split the group into pairs.  Ask each person to interview their partner.  One acts as a talk show host and the other acts as a guest.  The talk show show goal is to find two interesting facts about the guests.  Then the pairs will switch roles and repeat the activity.  Bring the group back together and have each talk show host introduce their guest with the two interesting facts.

Name tags whether company designed or a simple white tag with stick provides much needed assistance when trying to remember teammates and new connections names.  We are going to be securing permanent name tags for our leaders at the new company.  I plan on wearing mine throughout the halls to allow folks to get to know me and not be afraid to say hi if they don’t remember my name.  The name tag will be in place for networking, training and presentations I attend as well as conferences.  It is a simple way to be remembered.  Great branding for your company to the outside world as your logo will continue to be seen.  Remember to wear your name tag on the right hand side so when you give a firm handshake (that’s for another day!) you will turn your body slightly and have your tag easy to be seen and read.

Is it time to step out of your comfort zone and be the first to make an introduction when networking or simply starting to work at a new organization? Be intentional this year to be friendly and professional when breaking the ice and introducing yourself in a group or someone one-on-one.  Build your team in 2016 by starting meetings with a fun and friendly icebreaker.  As your team laughs and learns more about it each other the more you will see your team and organizations goals achieved.  Wear your name tag both inside and outside your organization so others can get to know you.

Overview

photoDo you want to have more success? (might mean having less) Do you desire to feel more fulfilled? Have keener insights on your own happiness? Is it time for you to step off the pavement and unto the path that leads you to new insights about your goals and dreams? If you answered, YES to any of these questions, then it may be time to meet and discover if LIFE COACHING is for you!

Hello, I welcome the opportunity to journey with you and assist you in the discovery of your life. Together we will be guided by “Dream. Decide. Do.”, a unique way to help you grow personally or professionally as you desire. My goal will be to serve as a coach for you as you build the life you wish; that allows you to move toward achievement with balance, positive self-esteem, energy to believe and experience life the way you were meant to!!

As an entrepreneur for over 21 years, I believe YOU can discover or create your personal and professional dreams and goals timeline to serve YOU as a guide for your life.  No dreams, no goals where are you going? Who is in charge if you are not?

My promise to you can be summed up in my personal mission statement:

“I seek to make a positive difference in the lives of individuals by discovering and supporting their dreams both grand and ordinary. I offer my time and talents to support them in achieving their highest potential in personal, family and professional enrichment. My mission has expanded to make a positive impact on nonprofit agencies to assist them in realizing their goals and dreams both grand and ordinary.”

Nonprofit executive board of directors, leaders of nonprofits, special event committee members, and volunteer managers: Need a fresh perspective on your agency and its impact in the community? Let me design a plan that will work for your team. My passion to serve has led me to the nonprofit industry, the third largest industry in America after retail and manufacturing. How can your team capture more resources in today’s competitive nonprofit field? With more than 10 years volunteering and working in the nonprofit industry, let me guide your team to generate new ideas, resources, donors and volunteers.

Say “YES” to Coaching! and let’s move to What’s Possible!

Sign up for a complimentary 45-minute strategy session! It is designed to help you understand your current status, what you really want, and guide you to the next steps in pursuit of your goals or dreams. While that’s a lot to accomplish in 45 minutes, keep in mind we will focus on one specific item or area.

Contact me at barbkbutler@gmail.com to learn more about me and my services.

Making the Most of 2015

WOW ! It’s hard to believe another year has past.  Have you taken time to ponder the old year and reflect on your accomplishments  both personal and professional.  For that matter have you looked at your life timeline to chart your high’s and low’s over the last 3, 5 or even 10 years.  It is really important to understand where you have been successful in your life. And to review all the goals you’ve achieved as you get ready for another year.

Are you ready for the newest of a new year ?  Ready for the hope and promise that a new year brings?  Have you been thinking, how will I make this year the best ever??  Have you considered what you will need to do differently to make personal and professional changes??

Thinking in three’s usually helps get ideas rolling?  I enjoy asking my coaching clients these three questions.  I hope they help you in getting ready for a positive new year.

First question,  What do you really want?  Honing in on your goals and dreams will help to define your year and clarify the steps you will need to take. Keep it simple: two goals for personal and professional that can be achieved in the first quarter or first six months of the year and then one major goal that may take longer.  You may also decide to create categories within personal and professional, however, remember not to overwhelm yourself with too many goals too fast.

Second question, Where are you at, at this moment in time?  This is your reflection time.  Making a date with yourself for an hour or two away from the hustle and bustle  will allow you to reminisce and review the year and maybe even your last 3 to 5 years.  Understanding where you are currently will help you plot a road map for where you want to go!

Third question, Next best step(s)? Now that you are ready to move forward what are the next best steps.  Feel free to write down a few and then bounce them off a trusted advisor.  Taking those next best steps will move you in the direction you want to go.  Keep in mind that you may/will make adjustments along the way.  Being flexible and open increases your chances of achieving your goals and dreams.

We have heard it many times-life is a journey and not a destination.  Enjoy it!  Take time to breathe and stop along the way to smell the flowers.  In the end it’s the friends, family and strangers you meet along the way that forms the fabric of your success in life.  All the best to you and a Happy 2017!

“Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men’s blood…Make big plans, aim high in hope and work.”  Daniel H. Burnham

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The Great Adventure – Networking

DSC_0149Today, I had the wonderful opportunity to share with local students a really short and spirited presentation on networking.  My talk covered what is networking, how does one do it and then a quick easy code word so the students could implement the talk during a career fair.

To begin, Networking what is it?  According to the Google dictionary Networking is the exchange of information or services among individuals, groups, or institutions; specifically: the cultivation of productive relationships for employment or business.

How does one do it?  When at an event, start with existing connections (it will be less scary). Locate who you want to talk to, and have a short elevator pitch ready if necessary (the art of small talk is king here to get the conversation rolling)!!  Remember networking is about focusing on the person you are talking to its not about YOU!  Listen to learn how you may be of service to the person you are connecting with.  If you feel a connection has been made ask for their business card and then remember to follow up.

My code word for the day was B-E-S-T!

B – Breathe, easier said then done.  When you breathe it relaxes you internally and allows you to think clearly.  Remember the number 7.  Breath in for a 7 count, hold for a 7 count and breathe out for a 7 count.  repeat once or twice.  When we get tense, we have a tendency to freeze up.  Walking around an event remember to breath and ask yourself am I breathing.

E-Engage, a big key at networking events is to actually meet people and not hang along the wall or as one of my friend’s shared, “I would just take one spin through a room see no one I know and leave.”  You have a unique opportunity every time you attend a networking event.  I’d like you to think of it as an adventure.  Engage at them it doesn’t hurt and it will definitely build your character.  In my direct sales days we called it stepping out of your “comfort zone”.  Set your thoughts on positive encounters.

S-Smile, remember (this is not to scare you) but you have only minutes, even seconds for someone to have a first impression of you.  So greet everyone you meet with a smile, firm handshake and look them in the eye.  Positive energy is a state of mind.  Remember if you are more upbeat its easier to create a positive aura about you versus folks who are more low key or not as excitable.

T-Trust, trust yourself, you know yourself better than anyone else.  Do your BEST to let the world see your positive attributes and why they need you!! Ask open ended questions. LISTEN, do not interrupt or be thinking of something else to say.  Be more interested then interesting.  Follow up with those company you liked best within 48 hours.  I like handwritten notes these days since no one seems to do them.

During my talk we whipped through the above points in 15 minutes it was fast and furious.  So in recapping our code word for the day B-E-S-T.  Breathe, Engage, Smile, Trust!

Overall, before any networking event remember to set your intention for the day?  What do you want to accomplish during the networking time? If we set intentions you are more likely to follow through during the event and afterwards.

Remember to do your B-E-S-T today and always!

Why BE Coached?

Do you desire to experience more success in your life?  Do you desire to have keener insights on yourself and your teammates?  Is it time to take charge of your career, your goals, your achievements?  If you answered YES! to any of these questions you may be ready to be coached!

Coaching has the power to change your life.  Ultimately, coaching is forward-looking and action-oriented.  It provides us with the focus necessary to take our dreams and make them realities.

My goal as your coach will be to come alongside you to help you find your focus, values and really listen to what you are saying.  The best part will be your self-discovery as you uncover the great plans that are in store for you.  Your life will be enriched by understanding your wisdom and the knowledge that you hold to make your goals and dreams come true.  It is hard work but worth the journey to truly discover the person you were destined to be!

Three simple questions will get the process rolling.  Where are you?  Where do you want to go?  How will you get there?

The answers will shape  your journey which may be very fuzzy in the beginning, but somewhere within in your soul you know there is something out there for you!  Coaching provides a way to clarify the ideas and move forward creating points of reference on your journey.

We hear it a lot,  “life is a journey not a destination.”  However, life gets in the way and obstacles may trip us up and take us off course.  Coaching will help improve your vision of where you are going.  Together we will put together a strategy and personal action plan for positive and proactive change.

It is an exciting time for you.  I welcome the opportunity to journey with you on your quest for positive personal or professional growth.  It may be a combination of both but we will not know until we start the steps of your self-discovery!

 

Distracted by Life

It’s almost the end of February and I’m thinking what!!  How did I get moving only to find out the direction I wanted to go in 2014 had gotten sidetracked.  Life I tell you!  Everyday almost ordinary life blocked my vision of my goals and desires.

Starting this year I was excited to get my business/personal development coaching venture off the ground. During the holiday break that my company offers I sat down and wrote down my personal goals and created a plan of action and then forgot to move forward.  On top of that through a crazy series of actions I started moving in a direction that I thought would benefit my coaching business and found myself spending more time on it then my business.

Distractions I tell you.  It is so easy to get off course on our life plans.  That is way writing down your goals for both your personal and professional life is critical to help you maintain your plan of action. Thank goodness I came to my senses about 10 days ago.  Reviewed my plan and said wait I need to turnaround.

I’ve been reading the book, “The Magic of Thinking BIG” by David J Schwartz, PH.D. and am thankful I have been.  This classic book from the late 50’s is full of great wisdom to encourage anyone who desires to acquire the secrets of success…achieve everything you’ve always wanted! Or so the cover claims!

I’ve been encouraged not to be so hard on myself because of distractions.  Rather as the chapter on goals shares: The important thing is not where you were or where you are but where you want to get.

I’m glad to say I’m back on track.  Today, I spent an afternoon brainstorming my promotion plan, reset my goals, wrote of list of marketing materials I may need plus social media ideas and how would I best conduct my business.  After that I wrote down the names of folks who know I’ve started my coaching business and those who I need to share the news with!

Now is the magic word of success.  Tomorrow, next week, later, sometime, someday often are synonyms for never.  Today, I’m feeling focused and took a big step in turning back to my dream.  I am happy to report I decided to say, “I”ll start now, right now.”

New Year New Opportunities

At the end of the year it is usually  hard to believe it’s already ending.  We ask ourselves: Where did the time go?  What did we do for fun during the year?  Did we travel?  Most of us probably worked to earn an income and see the horizon looming in 2014 as the same old story.  Does it have to be the same old story?  Would you like to make a change, take a little or a lot of risk next year?

For the past 20 years I have experienced a world called direct sales.  Did I think I would enjoy it when I started… not really!  Did I think I would earn the income I did…not really!

As I reflect on my career in direct sales I realize I have been blessed to be apart of an amazing group of people who help you to achieve your goals and dreams.

I was a little sad when I finally said good-bye to leadership in my old company.  After 20 years with 19 of them as a leader I knew that a new journey awaits me.   However, my excitement to start a new adventure with my own coaching business replaced my melancholy with a new positive energy!  I am ready to step out in a new adventure and be of service to others who are looking to move forward to achieve dreams and goals they have never imagined.  Are you ready to step out into a new adventure for yourself?

If you are not being paid what your worth, you owe it to yourself to find out more about a career, part-time or full-time in the direct sales industry.  Here’s a thought to consider, doing what you’re doing, will you be where you want to be and have what you want to have 5 years from now?  As an experienced consultant in running my own home based business I would love to help you achieve success.  Whether you check out direct sales, or own and operate your own business I may be able to guide you in new paths of thinking.

Why blend direct sales into your world?

If you haven’t heard of David Bach, author of the Finish Rich Book Series or read his materials you will need to and discover what David discovered about direct sales.

The moment you join direct sales, you are in business.  Generally, when you start a new business, the first weeks,  and months, are spent developing relationships, finding reliable suppliers, testing marketing plans, etc.  In direct sales -It’s all here and you’re ready to go, suppliers, marketing plans, training has all been systematically designed for your success!  Yes, I’m a little crazy I want the challenge of starting new!

You don’t have to do it all yourself.  If you know someone who, is an entrepreneur, created a business from scratch, you know how the entrepreneur spends time and money attending entrepreneur clinics, seeking networking groups to build community and takes marketing courses to grow their business.  In direct sales you have set opportunities.  I will be connecting with other coaches to have the support to build my biz.

You will be forced to stretch yourself.  Some important givens in being successful in any business: you will need to expend regular and consistent time and effort, and hard work equals a great income opportunity. Additionally, you must be prepared that “selling” your service or product will have its ups and downs,  At this point, you will either quit or stretch yourself.  All personal growth tends to come after the stretch not before.

You will find mentors and experts.  When you start a business, it is important to connect with like minded folks or create a mastermind group of your own to help and encourage each other and even challenge each other to grow.

You get to help other people.   Whether you choose direct sales or start your own business, or choose to work where you work what you do will make you successful if your desire is to help other people.  If you work from that place with integrity and honest intentions, you will lead a life of significance-and you will be a better person at the end of the day.

Enjoy 2014, start dreaming and visualizing what you want to achieve, develop a plan and most important find the vehicle to help you take action on your goals!!!  Contact me today for more details on working one on one to help you develop your plan for success.  Perhaps it is in direct sales, or starting your own business from home like so many other successful entrepreneurs or you may love what you do and want to be the best you can be!!1164832_coins_1

Holiday Networking Good Advice For Now and Beyond!

It’s that time of the year when more parties and After 5 events can make you sweat or make you smile with glee at the opportunity to meet old and new business friends.  When business networking it is good to have a plan of action for the evening when attending the many business functions over  the next weeks and into the New Year!

Here is a short summary of tips that I put together.  Happy networking, smile, relax, and have a good time connecting:

When you arrive at your event avoid gravitating to the people you know.  Say hi to those in charge and then find someone new to introduce yourself to.  This will help keep you in the right frame of mind as to why you came.  Also, survey the room and check out the high-traffic areas such as the main entrance, the bar, or near the food.

Stop selling and start listening!  When you meet someone for the first time, use it as an opportunity to get to know them.  Don’t sell them anything.  Rather, begin to establish a relationship.  My experience has been I ask lots of questions to strangers and then have them walk away with out  ever finding out anything about me.  It makes me chuckle since I believe that in itself is a key indicator of your true potential to connect with someone.

Keep your business cards handy so they are easy to access and in good condition.  Wear your name tag on the right side so when you shake hands your name tag is visible to view.  Yes, wear a name tag not everyone knows who you are or who you represent.  When you receive a card take time to write a note to yourself, especially where you met the person.  If you do it while chatting with the person it will convey a sense of personal connection.

During the course of your conversation, use the other person’s name two or three times.  People love to hear their own name and it will help you remember their name when the discussion is over.  If you have a good memory congrats.  If you don’t start by telling yourself I am great with names, I am great with names and practice, practice, practice remembering people’s names!!

After your new connection has shared something with you, ask them another question about what they just said.  This alerts the person that you really are paying attention to them.

I love this one – initiate conversation with someone who is standing by themselves.  As a high “I” on the DISC scale this is something I do on a regular basis.  The person will be happy to have someone to talk to them and as a result will many times open up with valuable information.  I have found that others tend to gravitate over and soon there is a crowd.  As a way of demonstrating your networking skills, introduce each new person you meet to at least one other person.

Follow up is the key to a successful networking night.  Statistics say, “When you meet someone for the first time, you have just 48 hours to follow up with them before they will completely forget about meeting you.”  Having your notes on the their business card helps to personal the follow up.

A Holiday networking event and for that matter any networking event is not a time to see how many business cards you can acquire.  Rather, it is a time to develop a few relationships that may have potential to blossom for both parties who made a connection.

 

A Great Article on Happiness

Thank you to Eric Barker of Barking Up the Wrong Tree blogsite.

http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2013/05/happier-life/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+bakadesuyo+%28Barking+up+the+wrong+tree%29&utm_content=Bloglines

Great reasons for you to join me in The Happiness Journey starting next month here in Waukesha County.  Contact me today for book club information.  A fun, four week course to learn about yourself, your self-esteem, your goals and dreams…and more…

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