“What Lies Behind Us and What Lies Before Us Are Tiny Matters Compared to What Lies Within Us.” Day 5 of Female Founders Accelerator
I mean seriously can these workshops get any better?! Each workshop seems to coincide PERFECTLY with the stage of my business I'm at in that particular week. I hate to say it... but it's like ... it was just meant to be! It was A LOT of information as usual but I've broken it down so sit back and enjoy reading some useful information on how to grow your business which can also be applied to how to grow as a person!
We started off with our usual 'check-in' session to check up on how everybody is doing since the last workshop. A few of us in the group have had it tough recently with personal issues going on including me. It reminded me that learning how to stay completely focused on our business goals through the good times should be made into a such a strong habit, it's easier to do it through the tough times also. The session also highlighted the fact that we never really know what anybody is really going through and what struggles they face so be nice to everyone!
Oh how I needed this information right here! Since the start of Bella Lash Brow, I've been constantly battling back and forth with the person I know I truly am vs. who I think I should be in order to run my business. But I'm glad to have confirmed that battle is NOT how it should be done.
Talent Dynamics is an extension of the infamous Wealth Dynamics used by entrepreneurs around the world to determine their personality profile. The central idea behind Talent Dynamics is "the experience you, your colleagues, your customers and your stakeholders have of your enterprise – and your collective efforts to grow the success of your organisation – is determined by one guiding principle - FLOW" (Hamilton, 2003). The level of FLOW can only be determined by how happy and fulfilled employees and business owners are. The more happy and 'in flow' employees are, the easier it will be to retain your staff and ultimately this will attract more clients. According to this theory, when each individual is in FLOW and the whole team is working in a balanced dynamic, innovation, creativity and positive action will SOAR.
Of course this is not something that we need to completely follow but talent profiling is profound and is based on scientific research. Having lived and worked as an English teacher in China for a year, my Chinese colleagues were always keen to explain talent profiling within them teams of teachers as it's based on a 5,000 year-old Chinese system called I-Ching. This system is explained in 'Book Of Changes' one of the oldest books in history translated by many around the world which can be "read as a book of wisdom revealing the laws of life to which we must all attune ourselves if we are to live in peace and harmony" (Wilhelm, 1989). For this reason, it simply cannot be ignored.
Seeing as I'm now in the process of sorting out a contract to employ my first ever P.A/ lash tech, this could not have come at a better time! :)
Marianne talked us through the Talent Dynamics square:
Introverts incline more towards the left and Extroverts incline more towards the right. If you are highest in intuitive thinking, you will float up to one of the high-frequency profiles: Mechanic, Creator or Star. If you are strongest in sensory thinking, you will gravitate to one of the low-frequency profiles: . If you are strongest in sensory thinking, you will gravitate to one of the low-frequency profiles: Accumulator, Trader or Deal Maker.
Marianne and I had a chance to discuss my talent profile and she quickly predicted that she thinks I'm a STAR and boy was she right! I honestly feel like I've just met myself all over again and can definitely see how best to run Bella Lash Brow whilst minimising risk of procrastination, disagreements etc within my team.
I will sum up characteristics of each dynamic starting with mine. Each profile has two other, secondary profiles but for the purpose of this blog, I will leave them out.
“Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.” Michael Jordan
Great! I know exactly what type of natural characteristics I possess. But what now? How can I ensure that knowing this will help me scale my business and get my team (hopes of 14 staff members by 2020!) in FLOW?
Well, STAR's need to be at the forefront of their business and experts advise even doing a mini showreel video speaking to camera etc and professional head shots which I've actually just very recently done! :) Exciting! But what I found the most interesting and also somewhat of a relief is that STAR's work best when they are left to be creative and work but have a professional team behind them to manage the business professionally.
Do you know how long I've been battling with this idea?? I would make jokes sometimes and say I wish I had a manager and friends and family would laugh too because of course I am the OWNER and of course I should be the director of everything right? Wrong! My weaknesses show that this is certainly not the case for me if I ever want to take Bella Lash Brow to unimaginable heights.
I've got to be honest! Every single weakness above applies. But instead of beating myself up over something I can't really change, why no focus ALL my energy on my strengths? My talent profile is my natural path and the most successful entrepreneurs stick to their path and hire others who can execute the stuff better than they can. Simple. There are millions of people in London and I'm sure I can find Mechanics to create my systems or Lords to sort my finances. Marina advises that a well balanced team makes for the best productivity and when people try and be everything mentioned above, things simply don't work.
"I know what to do so why don't I do it?" - 30min Hack (by me!)
So after lunch it was time for my 30min Hack Session! The organisers encouraged me to do one of the hack sessions we have at every workshop in which Sarah or Helen summarises a useful book in 30mins. Due to the amount of self development books I read, we thought it could be useful to the rest of the group. I agreed because STARs of course love to talk and when we have an engaged audience listening to something we're passionate about? Ah we're in our element! :)
So what was it all about? Well... this book simply changed my life when it comes to 'getting things done'. Most people already associate me with being "Miss Get Stuff Done" as I rarely ever don't do something I want to do. This is in life and in business. However, now that I am running a business and getting into the 'Autumn' stage of my business, getting everything done on time without losing sleep, sacrificing my social life or risking my sanity... is proving difficult!
So this book is based on scientific research written by Dr Nick Hall who has helped Fortune 500 businesses get the best out of their employees through activities and team building tasks. I will list the top 3 tips I found the most useful in this book:
1. Never say 'I don't have time!'
Dr Hall makes a point that when people ask something like 'So how are you getting on with those projects you said you would do?", we must never say 'I don't have time' as we immediately fall victim to something we cannot control. Everybody has the same 24hrs in a day, 7 days a week and so rather we should say something like "I've taken on too much for the time I DO have". This way, subconsciously, we have acknowledged the control we do actually have which is how much work we want to commit ourselves to. He also makes a point that we should never commit to something without checking our schedule first. The next time someone ask you for a favour, say something like "I will need (some time) to consider if I can fit it into my schedule and I will get back to you". This is something I've actually tried and although I felt really bad the first time I did it, considering it was a small favour for my MUM when she does so much for me, I had to be honest and she did actually appreciate the honesty! Now it's almost an automatic response.
2. What the eyes see and the ears hear, the mind believes?
Dr Hall completely disagrees! He does not agree with the common quote "seeing is believing" at all but rather "believing is seeing!". Realty is simply an image in our minds. Our culture, childhood, life experiences etc all shape our values and beliefs and so when two people look at exactly the same thing in front of them, the image will be totally different in their minds because no two people have exactly the same beliefs and values.
Here, I performed a task that Dr Hall performs at one of his live talks when talking about this subject. I asked the group to simply listen to a list of words: Rest, Awake, Tired, Dream, Night, Eat, Comfort, Sound, Slumber, Snore. I then asked everyone to write down as many words as they could remember. After about 30seconds, I asked who had written down Night which was right, Eat which was right and then I asked if anybody had written down Sleep? This is of course not in the list but guess what? Nearly everybody did! I even went as far as checking who wrote this down close to the top of their list and again most had done! Everyone was shocked and felt so sure, they asked questions like 'are you sure you never said sleep?' or 'did you say a work that rhymed with sleep?'.
This just shows how powerful the effect of external influences which stimulate our senses can have on our activities. Because the words I read created an IMAGE of sleep in their minds, everybody was confident that they had heard the word sleep. I truly believe it's things like this that can really stop people achieving their true potential in life because external factors can really be powerful if we choose to let them overtake an unbiased reality.
According to Dr Hall, 'belief driven' people are those that are simply driven by their beliefs and struggle or sometimes never do take into account other people's beliefs (religion, culture) etc and 'reality driven' people are those that can even slightly alter their own beliefs when they learn of another 'point of view' in order to be more in line with an unbiased reality. The most successful people in life fall into one of these categories. I'll let you decide which one that is :)
3. It's not what you're doing, it's how you're doing it!
The most useful tip for me was definitely the tips on how to get through tasks productively. The whole point of me getting this book was because I found that I would sit at my desk/ in a cafe for up to 10hours sometimes on 'admin day' and get through very little! I knew what I had to do, nothing on my to-do-list is ever too challenging, yet I would struggle to get everything done on time. I've read a lot on time management and so would always put the most important things at the top of my list and work through but this may not always be the best way to manage such precious time.
According to Dr Hall, we must pay attention to what parts of our brains are active at the time of wanting to do a task. As you may know, the left side of our brain is used for language based tasks and the right side of our brains is used for creative tasks. In order for us to do our best at a particular task, the side we need must be active.For example, if the left side of our brain is active, it's the perfect time to write a report as opposed to designing marketing material.
But how do we know which part of our brain we're in at any particular moment? Well it's really quite simple. You simply breathe slowly up through your nose and the nostril which is allowing you to breathe in more air better than the other is the side you're in! But of course sometimes we need to write an important email when we're in our creative side so you simply hold the nostril that is allowing more air in and breathe slowly through the other nostril for a few minutes to activate that side of the brain you need to stay focused and be productive!
The type of tasks you do should also alternate! We should always aim to do opposite tasks whenever possible. If you have 'write a blog' as a task, you're next task should be something like 'create email signature graphic' in order to 'mind blocks' or procrastination. Dr Hall also reminds us to always stick to the time we have dedicated to this . To ensure max productivity, 90mins max should be dedicated on any given task.
I still am definitely struggling to keep on top of everything but have definitely improved and things can only get better!
How do you Become Irresistible? - By Nerea Carryon
What better way to end this great workshop than with a fun, energetic 'Life Changing Coach, Inspirational Speaker and CEO' Nerea Carryon!
Nerea was actually part of our female founder panel at our first workshop so we knew a bit about her background and what she does now. Nerea worked for one of the biggest financial companies in the world and so had a stable, secure career earning great money. However Nerea simply got so fed up with feeling like she wasn't living up to her true purpose and left it all behind to become the founder of www.thehappyworldcompany.com after seeing how frustrated and unhappy some of her colleagues were despite the fact that they had everything one could ask for! "I had two options, change the whole financial world or do my best to help change people's attitude."
Luckily for us, Nerea chose the latter and she started off the session simply asking what we think the word 'irresistible' means. We all shouted out answers and then had to decide how many of the qualities mentioned we thought we possessed. I could pick out about 5 on the board which wasn't bad but being aware of what other qualities 'irresistible' people possess is extremely useful if we're ever going to develop as successful entrepreuneurs.
After completing an activity in which we discussed our qualities and also our weaknesses we aim to improve, Nerea got us up and we each had to make a dance move which went with our greatest skill/ quality we think we posses. Mine was 'SPEAKER' (I honestly just love to talk and inspire people!) and we each had to go into the middle of the circle shouting out the words several times before the others repeated and followed our moves. The music was on and the energy was amazing! This really helped us be proud of our quality as all too often, we shy away from telling others what we are great at in fear of coming across too cocky.
Being irresistible for me means that people cannot get enough of you and want more of what you have to offer. This of course is crucial in the service industry because no matter how great my lash and brow work is, I will not have the regular client base I do now if I was someone they didn't want to be around. I have seen so many great beauticians out there who are amazingly skilled but have this unapproachable personality that clients simply won't hang on in there no matter how fantastic the end result is or how great the prices are. I truly believe as a lash/ brow technician, my personality is part of the services and my reviews are evidence on how much importance is given on the technician. Most of my feedback starts with "Debbie is.... lovely, friendly, knowledgable etc" before mentioning anything about that their lashes and brows looking great, comfortable space, perfect location etc.
Now that I am introducing training courses in order to give other women a chance to be an entrepreneur and provide for their loved ones through doing something they love, I am working on all my qualities as much as I possibly can as well as trying to gain some more!
I am so grateful to be in a position where I can truly make a positive difference in other people's lives and will always continue to share my inspiration and knowledge with others.
After all, "true leaders don't create followers. They create leaders".