It is February 12th and we are almost mid month of the 2nd month of the year. So, I wanted to check in to see how you are doing with your goals? Are you on track? Did they slip your mind? Or maybe you just gave up on the whole entire process.
If you have drifted off course, or forgot about them let me share 3 quick tips to get you back on track and headed for success.
1. Set Measurable Goals. You must set a goal that you can measure by. Don't just say I am going to get more clients. You should say, I will get 10 new clients by June 15, 2014. Now you have a goal that you can measure. This will help in the future when you look back to see why the goal did or didn't work out.
2. Make a Specific Plan for that Goal. Now you need to plan on how you are going to achieve that goal. If your goal is to get 10 new clients by June how are you going to achieve that? Again, the more specific of the plan the better chances you have of achieving that goal. Example; I will get 10 new clients by June 15th, by sending out 20 marketing letters a week, posting to social media every other day with valuable information, attending a networking meeting once a month, etc. Now that is a specific plan that you can follow and measure.
3. Follow Through. Make sure you follow through on your plan. I know that working from home that is this can be a difficult task at times. If you have a hard time getting the actions steps done in your plan you can ask a friend to follow up with you, set your phone timer to remind you, reward yourself once you have completed all tasks that month, or hire a coach that will hold you accountable.
If you want some help getting clear on your goals and want to be held accountable to move forward in your business, I would love to help you. Schedule your FREE Power Up Productivity Session to get started.
If you have a home biz challenge you'd like a solution to, please share it here or shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can Taking a Break Increase Productivity?
Written By: Doreen Dilger, The Home Based Business Coach
Are you working and working but just can't seem to focus and get stuff done? You might be thinking that working from home is much harder than you thought, but there might be simple solution - just take a break. Taking short ten minute breaks throughout the day can help you refocus and reenergize so you're more productive once you get back to work.
Scientists and psychologists have actually done many studies that show how effective breaks can be. In fact, many large businesses have now started adopting break times into the course of the regular day. Employees are actually paid to sit at their desk and read, research topics they enjoy on the Internet, and do other things that interest them. It's been shown that allowing these breaks actually increases productivity and employee satisfaction enough to compensate for the lost time plus some.
This can be applied to working from home. To get the most good out of your breaks, try making your activities something that will help increase production when you return to work, rather than something that simply distracts you. Some great options include aerobic activity such as going for a walk, playing with your dogs or relaxation exercises. They'll clear your mind, while producing chemicals in your body that will boost concentration when you get back to work.
If physical exercise isn't your thing, or you just don't have the chance to do it at due to a deadline, there are other things you can do to relax and clear your mind so you can get back to work. Meditation or other breathing exercises only take a few minutes, but can help you feel better mentally and physically. Not only does it help you focus, it can also lower your blood pressure and help reduce the physical signs of stress.
The biggest danger in taking breaks is not getting back to work when the break is done. Working from home there are a lot of distractions and people will try to skip breaks because they're afraid they won't get back to work and the work won't get done. But when you skip breaks, you can significantly decrease productivity and actually end up getting less work done. The key is setting a time limit to your breaks and sticking to them. If you have trouble, try setting a timer when you take a break, or having someone back you up such as a family member by making sure you get back to work.
If you've been pushing too hard and have reached burnout, a ten minute break just isn't going to be enough. If you are finding yourself feeling sick, tired, and only ever in a negative mood, especially about work, you are probably burnt out by work. In this case, you not only need to incorporate short breaks into your day, you also need to alter your how and when you work and may even need an extended vacation. Working with a business coach will also help you determine where you are spinning your wheels.
Breaks are an easy and effective way to increase your results and become more successful with very little effort.
If you have a home business challenge you'd like a solution to, please share it here or shoot me an email at email@example.com. You may see your issue solved in a future blog episode.
Top 6 Ways to Keep Your Customers Happy
Written By: Doreen Dilger, The Home Biz Coach
The most important things that any business owner needs to do is to keep their customers happy. If your customers aren't happy, not only will they not purchase from you again, the word will spread that they're unhappy, causing you to miss out on even more business. Here are my top 6 ways on keeping customers happy.
Listen and Listen Some More
You've been told before that you were given two ears and one mouth for a reason, and that is so that you can listen twice as much as you talk. Try taking the time to truly listen to each of your customers when you get the opportunity to talk to them. You may be surprised at what you learn.
If you have staff or contractors working with you, it's very important to give them some power to satisfy customers without having to check with you. If price adjustments need to be made or a return has to happen, and your contractors or staff can't do it on the spot, it will make the customer very unhappy. It will also make for frustrated staff.
Try not to ever say no. It's true that at times you'll have to return your customer's money and take a hit on your bottom line. However, if you can find a way to do all of it without every saying the words no and spinning everything into a positive, you'll be surprised at how fast customers will become positive too. Even a customer who got their money back will say good things about you if you were positive and fair.
Make It Easy for Customers
It can be difficult for your customers if they can't get service easily. There should be different ways to get customer service from online FAQ, to a help desk, even to a toll free number if possible. If you have a face to face service business by empowering your workers to help your customers, you'll make it easier for everyone.
One of the things that gets customers in a bad state is having to wait too long for a response. Even if you do not have an answer yet, respond to let them know when you might have an answer. It's important to provide a resolution for problems quickly and with as little emotion as possible.
Keeping in touch with customers is an important part of keeping customers happy. Always contact your customers after they've purchased something from you to find out if they liked it, what you can do better, or other information. It doesn't matter if you and the customer had problems in the past, if you resolved them then it's perfectly okay to stay in touch with the customer.
Finally, be honest with your customers and they'll be honest with you. Give them a fair deal and they'll be fair to you. Customers really just want you to be dependable and competent at your job, while giving them the attention they feel they deserve.
WOULD LOVE YOUR FEEDBACK!
If you have a home biz challenge you'd like a solution to, please share it in the comment section or shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may see you issue solved in a future blog episode.
About the Author: Doreen Dilger is a Certified Manifest Method Coach, Certified Life Coach, Author and Founder of Women Empowering Women Now.