Stop Hopping Around!

What is Your Plan?

It's October. It's nearly the end of October. You have the rest of this week to figure out what you're doing with your business.


At the end of this week is Halloween, after that - in the UK - you've got Guy Fawkes Night. In the USA, you have Thanksgiving. Then there's Christmas.

At what point do you plan to plan your plan for 2011 if you don't do it THIS WEEK???

Why You Can't Wait Until January 

November is the time of year when people let things slide. They're thinking about the holidays. They'll leave the business stuff until they make their resolutions in January.


Why? Because you're following this blog to find out how to keep calm and kick arse and a big part of the 'kicking arse' portion of that is to do with preparedness, resilience and resourcefulness. If you faff about now, you'll lose out in January. Take action, and you won't. 

First, read my last blog post and make some decisions about where you are right now.

Next, sketch out some ideas about where you'd like to go next.

Third, get on my list for updates about things to help you kick butt next year. There's some amazing opportunities just about to come up, and the people on my newsletter list will find out first.

Stop Faffing About!

The time is coming when you'll need to pick a box, and stick with it. This is your last week to faff about. 

Leave comments and tell me your thoughts. Is this something you've thought about? Have you noticed that others have a problems with it? Is it something you've noticed in yourself? Share your thoughts.



Sometimes... When you Get It Right... It hurts.

funny pictures of cats with captions

If you've been paying attention, particularly if you follow me elsewhere online, you'll know I made a prediction at the start of this year. You'll know that the prediction I made led me to set up this blog. I've been making predictions about businesses and culture all my life and, more often than not, they come true. 

Sometimes, when you get it right, it's glorious. 
Sometimes, when you get it right, it hurts.

At 14, I made my first big prediction that affected business. I wrote a speech about global warming (this was over 20 years ago), and the steps that needed to be taken to prevent it. That speech went on to become the basis for the environmental policy of a huge company. As a consequence, I ended up in the House of Commons a few years later, quizzing politicians - but that's a story for another day. 

In 1999, Google was a mis-spelling that had just written its first press release. I had just graduated. I opened a company, and started to blog. This was before 'blogging' was a concept.  Feedback was central to the sites we set up. The feedback form stated that we wanted to hear good and bad. I predicted the future of the web would be social, informal, and transparent. 

Why am I telling you this? 
  1. It's a good track record. Sometimes I get it wrong but usually my predictions are spot on. Most of my biggest mistakes have come from ignoring my predictions. Unfortunately, when you ignore stuff like this, it doesn't go away. It bites you on the butt because you're not prepared. If I have a hunch about something, particularly if I keep going on about it, it pays to listen, and prepare.
  2. Women have to shout louder about their accomplishments. A fact that, unfortunately, is also part of what I have to say next. .
It is Happening

I predicted this recession, and I made another prediction many months ago. It is happening now.

The UK government just announced the extent of the redundancies expected in the coming months. 500,000 in the public sector. 65% of the public sector employees are... female.

You might be thinking, 'well, I'm male and I don't work in the public sector, so I'm fine.' Wrong. For every job lost in the public sector, one is likely to be lost in the private sector. One million jobs in total... gone. One of them may be yours.

When Everyone Zigs, You Zag

My friend, Diane Hochman, is fond of saying that when everyone zigs, you should zag. It's true. Right now, everyone will be starting to panic. You're not going to do that though. You're going to prepare.

How to Prepare
  1. Grab a lever arch file and in large, friendly letters write the following on the spine: 'Operation Sh*tstorm'. You can take out the * if you like.
  2. Research all the government benefits you are entitled to if you lose your job. 
  3. Research the procedure within your organisation if you lose your job. Is there a decent redundancy package? Are you in a better position if you take voluntary redundancy? If you're in the private sector, has your company burned through its resources already? If so, you'll need to rely on the state redundancy package - which is likely to be smaller. Research how to apply for that. Send off for all the paperwork. 
  4. Get hold of paperwork for social housing, etc. Contact Pay Plan if you think there's a chance you'll default on payments to creditors. Get all the paperwork you could need in a worst case scenario. You might not need it, but if one million people suddenly lose their jobs, you will get stuck in a traffic jam of panic. Get the crappy tasks done now.
  5. Work out a budget. Get an absolutely accurate picture of your outgoings. 
  6. Put all the paperwork in the 'Operation Sh*tstorm' file. You have now dealt with it psychologically. The moment you hear that you've been made redundant, you can shrug, pull down the file, and take action. I did this. It works.
  7. Having prepared for the worst, you must now prepare for the best. That will take a change of mindset...
Forget finding another job. You don't even want to know what I predict for the job market next year. You don't want to be part of that nightmare. Instead, start preparing to become an entrepreneur now.

You may be thinking 'I work in the public sector. It's about as entrepreneurial as the House of Lords. How the heck do I become an entrepreneur?'  Don't worry. I can help with that. I'm writing a book at the moment, to help people who are made redundant due to these cuts. I'll let you know when it's ready. In the meantime, just start laying the groundwork so you can deal with redundancy if it hits you. You need that groundwork so you can keep calm and kick arse. The first part of the groundwork starts in your mind:

If you could have any kind of career, what would it be?

Feel free to let us all know in the comments section.


Alligetters with Crocodeals Need to Get Out of the Sales Swamp

demotivational posters - NO MATTER HOW MUCH YOU KNOCK

Nobody wants to be THIS guy.

The cold blooded, cold-calling predator is a dinosaur. Just as crocodiles and alligators have remained unchanged since ancient times, so alligetters are stuck in a timewarp. A toxic swamp of entitlement.

Alligetters Don't Care

Alligetters are all about them. They don't care whether what they are offering is helpful to their prospect or not. All they care about is the sale.

Crocodeals Only Serve One Person

A crocodeal only serves the reptile selling it. They know the buttons to push to make you buy. There's nothing wrong with that. A good grasp of psychology is not a bad thing. The problem with the alligetter is that they push these buttons even when they know the product or service is wrong for you

Alligetters Are Cold-Blooded

Alligetters only ever go in cold. You are just a number to them. No matter how much you tell them their product won't work for you, they keep on pushing. People are getting bored of alligetters. If you are an alligetter, no matter how much you knock, nobody's ever going to let you in

Have a look at the things I promote (marked with 'promotion'). Do I tell you that you MUST buy them? No. Do I tell you what's wrong with them? Yes. You aren't just a sale to me. You are a person. To an alligetter though... you're the next kill.

How to Stop Being an Alligetter

Unlike alligators - who don't need to evolve - alligetters do, and can. There's no shame in having been an alligetter. It's how traditional businesses once taught people to sell. In fact, if you're aware enough to notice that swamp is getting toxic, and move out of it, it says great things about you. Here's how you can start to evolve:

  1. Leave comments on other people's blogs. Don't just passively consume content. Give something back. Become part of the conversation.
  2. Retweet good content on Twitter. Sharing information you find valuable helps both the creator of the information, and your followers.
  3. Use share buttons, like the ones below the comments on this post, to share information you find useful. If you can't find share buttons on a blog, just cut and paste the url, and tweet it out, or share on Facebook. If you need to shorten it, use a service like bit.ly
  4. For extra bonus points, link to a good blog post written by someone else within a newsletter to your own list of subscribers.
  5. Find out what your prospects REALLY want. If you don't provide it, guide them to someone who does. You haven't lost the sale - you never had it - but you've helped out two other people at no cost to yourself.
  6. GIVE 15 TIMES MORE THAN YOU TAKE. Some months it will be closer to 10, or even 5, but keep the number 15 in your head and keep striving to give that much more than you take. 
  7. The idea of adding value isn't new. If you go through this blog, you'll find a video of Jim Rohn talking about it YEARS ago. Take action on this advice. Add value. If you do, you won't be a swamp dweller, you'll evolve into something much more approachable.
What are your thoughts on this? How do you feel about alligetters and crocodeals? Can you add anything else?

Leave a comment below (or click the speech bubble at the top right of the post to open the comment box if you've come here via the homepage).


Real World Stuff: Please Pray for My Dad †

Just for a moment, I need to go off-topic. My father recently had a life-saving operation. His recovery was going well, then this morning I received a call to say he'd been rushed into the operating theatre for an emergency operation.

If you are in any way religious, a prayer would be very welcome right now. If you are not, but would like to send positive thoughts or leave a comment, I'll pass those on to him when he is conscious.

Thank you.