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The One Thing Business Owners Should Be Doing Every Day

The One Thing Business Owners Should Be Doing Every Day

With my body aching from head to toe and hands covered in fresh blisters, the thing that hurt the most was my pride.

I tried to hide the pain from my two sons. But they could see right through my stiff posture and a fake smile.

Anybody could have. 

When you run out of strength and have to ask for help, it hurts. 

When you hear people laughing at you, it hurts more. 

When you realize that you were rowing a boat with the anchor dropped while dragging 75 pounds of seaweed through the mud, you feel like a complete and total dunce.

3 Hours Earlier…

How to Help 93% of Your Employees Feel More Productive

How to Help 93% of Your Employees Feel More Productive

Just recently, Forbes published an article reporting that only 7% of workers feel productive during the workday. 

7 percent!!!

Just think about that for a minute... 93 out of 100 employees don't feel like they can get their work done.

And if they don’t feel like they’re getting their work done… Guess what? Let’s just say they could be doing a lot more.

What do they blame?

    How to Grow Your Business with Strategic Customer Retention

    How to Grow Your Business with Strategic Customer Retention

    The rising power of consumers is perhaps the biggest game-changer in the world of modern business.

    People are well-informed, less tolerant of shabby service, and more specific in their demands. Digital technologies have empowered them and transformed the way businesses perceive and deal with them. Nowadays, attracting customers is just one part of the success equation.

    The real work starts once you need to keep their attention and win their trust. ..

    What 5.8 Million People Taught Me About Small Business Marketing

    What 5.8 Million People Taught Me About Small Business Marketing

    I know the feeling.

    Another marketing campaign, another disappointment.

    You start out with high hopes, and big dollar signs in your eyes.

    But when the results from your campaign start coming in, it’s more of the same… Lackluster results.

    Of course, you don’t fool yourself into thinking your marketing will take off like wild-fire, but you at least expect to get a few customers out of it.

    Alas, every new campaign confirms your worst fear—you're spending money on crappy marketing that isn't effective.

    Well, here's a secret...

    Dealing with Difficult Customers and Providing Great Customer Service

    Dealing with Difficult Customers and Providing Great Customer Service

    If you're reading this, you may have dealt with angry and difficult customers too. Maybe you’re dealing with one right now?

    These customers seem to suck all your time, energy, and happiness right out of your business. They complain, make demands, and force you to spend an inordinate amount of time fixing their problems so nasty word doesn't spread about your customer service.

    It's a firefight. And since you’re the business owner, someone handed you the hose.

    Say the wrong thing, and it just adds fuel to the fire. Let it burn too long, and it spreads.

    So how do you keep it from spreading? More importantly, how do you keep the next one from starting so you can focus on building a business instead of controlling damage?

    That's what we're going to look at today. And it all starts with creating a customer focused organization, from the top down...

    Want to Grow Your Business? Find These 3 Numbers First...

    Want to Grow Your Business? Find These 3 Numbers First...

    I’m going to use two words that will quickly turn you away.

    Your first reaction will be to close this article and search for greener pastures.

    But you mustn’t…

    Because these two words are going to be the root of your success. If used correctly, these two words are going to help you:

    ·       discover your niche,

    ·       find your ideal customers,

    ·       increase sales,

    ·       grow your business, and

    ·       crush your competition.

    You’ve heard these words before. So has your competition.

    Your competition has already used these two words to get funding, grow their startup, snag away your customers, and start encroaching on your company’s territory.

    That’s because these words aren’t some hidden secret. They are widely used in corporate circles, necessary for business planning, and critical to any company’s success.

    That’s why you’ll want to leave. Because you think you know what these words mean. Because you’re convinced that you’ve already gotten everything you can out of them. Because you believe you are too busy and have more pressing things to learn and bigger problems to solve.

    But you don’t.

    Because while you may have done this before, you haven’t used these two words since you started your business… and you haven’t used these two words to affect growth.

    That’s what we’re going to do today.

    We’re going to make your company stronger. Stronger from within (through a clear understanding of your customers, their buying power, and their problems) and from without (through increased presence, better customer targeting, and growth into new business areas).

    Ready to hear them?

    How to Prioritize Product Features Your Customers Will Pay For

    How to Prioritize Product Features Your Customers Will Pay For

    Half of us were annoyed. The other half were pissed. 

    “We have to let users ‘undo’. Our product is useless without it," I argued (I was on the pissed off team in case you’re wondering).

    “But nobody is going to NOT buy our product just because there’s no undo," came the response.

    We argued far longer than we should have, debating the intricacies of an undo button and whether our engineering team should develop this one feature for our customers.

    After multiple meetings, half a dozen arguments, and hurt feelings all around, a decision was finally made.

    Sort of.

    How to Get the Most Out of Business Travel

    How to Get the Most Out of Business Travel

    If you do any amount of business travel, you'll want to listen to this podcast. 

    With nearly a million flight miles between the two of us, we uncover travel tips and tricks (and hilarious stories) that could only come from experience. 

    In it, we discuss how to get the most out of business travel, how to maximize the value of your time, tips and hacks to make travel more enjoyable, and what to do when things go wrong.

    How to Succeed at Business When Things Are Looking Bleak

    How to Succeed at Business When Things Are Looking Bleak

    In this podcast, Modern da Vinci expert and business owner Seth Sinclair talks about how difficult it is for small businesses to succeed, how anxiety and stress build when business plans don’t pan out as expected, and how financial and other pressures can lead business owners to give up.  He shares a personal and recent story about persisting through these challenges over a two-year period to finally achieve a foundation of success. 

    How to Hire A-Players Like a Recruiting Professional with Fletcher Wimbush

    How to Hire A-Players Like a Recruiting Professional with Fletcher Wimbush

    Consistently hiring A-players is one of the most challenging aspects of running a business. Far too often, our hiring process is either non-existent or hasn’t been given a lot of thought. Fletcher Wimbush from The Hire Talent is here to help us change that.

    In this interview, Fletcher shows us (with over 30 years of experience) how hire and recruit top talent. We talked for nearly an hour, and discussed dozens of amazing insights any business owner can use consistently hire A-players. Use these tips to begin getting the right people on the bus and build a team that gets results.  

    3 Things You Should Do to Give Killer Performance Reviews

    3 Things You Should Do to Give Killer Performance Reviews

    Oh, the dreaded performance review process.

    You either hate it, or you hate it. Am I right?

    It’s not that you think they’re unnecessary… After all. Even if you don’t give performance reviews now, somewhere in the back of your mind, you know you should.

    It’s that they take time out of work, cause unnecessary stress, and don’t seem to be very effective at changing employee behavior. And isn’t changing behavior for the better the whole point?

    So, should we just ditch them all together? My answer to that is a resounding “NO!”

    When done properly, performance reviews can be a welcome source of feedback for your employees. They can lead to deeper discussions about responsibilities, career goals, and organizational improvements.

    So instead of throwing them out, let’s implement 3 simple tips to get them right.

    How to Turn Anxiety Into Opportunity with Business Networking

    How to Turn Anxiety Into Opportunity with Business Networking

    If there's one thing that makes business owners anxious, it's networking.

    Some would describe it as difficult, others stressful. However, the importance of it cannot be understated.

    Business networking can lead to partnerships, sales, and future contacts that can help you (and you them) in unforeseen ways. It's a necessity for any business owner, and if you do it wrong, you'll miss countless opportunities. 

    So how does someone (like me) who is anxious about networking with other professionals push through? 

    How to Uncover the Greatest Threats to Your Small Business

    How to Uncover the Greatest Threats to Your Small Business

    You need your business to be successful.

    If your business fails, you won’t be able to earn a living and provide for yourself, your family, or your employees. If you don’t have money, you can’t buy food and shelter. And if you don’t have food and shelter, you die!

    Sound a little extreme?

    Maybe, but to a large extent, it’s true. Your business is your livelihood. You can always try to find another job if things go wrong, but that would mean your business failed.

    This is the pressure that many small business owners feel each day, and we’re here to help you change that feeling.

    Instead of worrying about what the future holds, we want to build your confidence in your business. We want to give you a clear path to achieving your goals. And what we’re about to cover in this post will give you exactly what you need to focus on to make that happen.

    How to Get Unresponsive Prospects to Return Your Calls (and Emails)

    How to Get Unresponsive Prospects to Return Your Calls (and Emails)

    It's mind-boggling, isn't it?

    You have a great meeting with a potential customer. Your presentation is on point. You answer all their questions. And they show all the buying signs. 

    Before leaving, you end with a hearty handshake and promise to send more information. 

    Only when you do, they don't respond.

    You leave them a friendly voicemail. You shoot them another email. You remind them about your great meeting. And what do you get in return?

    Nothing.

    You follow up again. You ask them to call you back. You try anything to get them respond. And what do you get?

    Silence.

    At some point, you give up... figuring your prospect was never interested to begin with. Enough with them. On to the next client.

    Sound familiar? It's happened to me dozens of times. 

    Unfortunately, I learned later, I had left dozens of sales on the table.  

    There's good news, though. With one simple technique, you can drastically increase the number of silent prospects that return your calls. Case in point, when I implemented this technique, my response rate increased by over 60%!

    Team Building Like a Professional with James Bennett

    Team Building Like a Professional with James Bennett

    Quick...

    Can you describe the difference between teamwork and team building? 

    Do you know the three factors to creating an effective team building event?

    How do you apply vulnerability-based trust into your leadership and management goals to bring out the most productive, effective, and excited staff?

    These questions aren't for the feint of heart, and often take years to understand and execute. 

    Unless you're a Professional team builder like James Bennett of Firefly Events. 

    James runs a small business to build team productivity, camaraderie, and effectiveness through planned events and outings. His experience is incredibly deep, and the list of companies he's worked with is impressive, to say the least. 

    In our interview with James, we uncover some of his secrets to building strong teams, tips for dealing with toxic employees, and influential books that have helped businesses of all sizes develop an effective and energetic staff.

    How to Stay on Track (and Massively Productive) Every Day

    How to Stay on Track (and Massively Productive) Every Day

    You know what's coming... 

    At the end of today, you'll either feel a sense of accomplishment, or like you've wasted another day. 

    It's not that you didn't work hard. 

    You answered emails. You took phone calls. You attended meetings. You made decisions. 

    But for some reason you got nothing done. 

    Well, that's not true. You got a lot of other people's work done, just not your own. 

    You've made little progress toward your goals. You've been running around solving other people's problems. You've been answering other people's questions, and spending time in other people's meetings.

    In other words, you've been working on urgent, but not important tasks. 

    There's a solution to this problem. A way to move closer to your goals every day. 

    How to Crush Your Small Business Goals in the New Year

    How to Crush Your Small Business Goals in the New Year

    If you’re heading into 2017 thinking about setting new plans and goals for your business, Modern da Vinci is here to help. In this brief video, we cover:

    1. three big planning mistakes that you must avoid, and
    2. the first step you should take to set the foundation for your planning process.  

    This is the first video in a series where we will lay out a specific approach for creating a simple, clear, and impactful plan to help you set (and reach) your goals in 2017. And beyond.

    How to Get Superhuman Productivity with One Remarkable App

    How to Get Superhuman Productivity with One Remarkable App

    It’s no secret, you’re pressed for time.

    You wear multiple hats, share multiple responsibilities, and have more things to do than there are hours in the day.

    Maybe you’ve even committed to being more productive or focused in the new year.

    Superhuman productivity you say? I’ll take two helpings of that.

    After all, with so many demands on your time, being able to accomplish your goals while still saving time for family, self-improvement, and relaxation sounds like a dream.

    But where do we start?

    There are literally thousands of productivity tips and apps on the Internet… every one claiming to give you that dream.

    This isn’t “yet another productivity tip.”

    This is a way to organize your learning, clean up your computer, educate yourself using spare moments in your day (like driving), and literally read your news and articles twice as fast as you can today.

    Superhuman. Productivity.

    Let’s get focused. Let’s get productive. Let’s stop procrastinating. And let’s download an app to help.

    Top 7 Small Business Topic Posts of the Year

    Top 7 Small Business Topic Posts of the Year

    I’m a big believer in looking back, reflecting on what has gone well, and building on that in the new year to get closer to my goals.

    When I look at Modern da Vinci, the growth we’ve seen is incredible. It’s a sign that we’re on the right track, but more importantly, it’s a sign that the small business community is as vibrant as ever.

    Here are some incredible statistics from 2016:

    • Average reading time is up 21.45% over last year.
    • Bounce rate is down 35.14%.
    • 521.74% more page views this year over 2015.
    • 850.70% increase in new visitors in 2016!

    These statistics are obviously exciting for Seth and me here at Modern da Vinci. But more so, these statistics should make you proud. Proud to be a small business owner. Proud to be part of an ongoing conversation with owners like yourself, all learning and growing together.

    We’re excited for what’s to come in 2017. We’re looking forward to growing more with you and finding new small business owners like yourself to learn from.

    But before we end 2016, it’s worth reviewing the top posts in each of the five areas for a growing, thriving small business.