Have you listened to our Podcast?

Listen

Interview Sky Blossoms Seg 1 | Relationships

It’s Penny Zenker.  On this show we explore your greatest potential of tapping into core elements of time and energy management.  At Take Charge, we provide you with a strategic way to dramatically and sustainably increase your productivity and your profits.

This week we are going to focus on the psychology of relationships.  You have heard me talk about Championship psychology.  For those of you that are new, it means bringing your best into everything you do.  Treating every day like game day.  It’s clear in athletics and successful people know how to apply it to business.  So many times, it’s overlooked in our personal life.  Our relationships reflect and reform our success in all areas of life, especially in business.  None of us, succeed purely on our own.  Seriously, no one.  Can your business succeed if you are not forming positive relationships with employees and clients? Can you bring great energy to the board room table if your relationship with your spouse or children isn’t fulfilling?  Tony Robbins has been quoted saying “The quality of your life is the quality of your relationships.”  That is where the emotions are most magnified.  The real key to maintaining a championship psychology is being able to do this even when circumstances are not in your favor. 

Championship psychology in relationshipsLet’s take Nelson Mandela for example, he was unfairly jailed but he made a choice that he would like to focus on learning a language of his oppressors so when and if he would get out, he would bring about great change.  He was once asked how did he survive all of those years in jail?  He strongly responded with the words, I didn’t survive, I prepared.  So champions are not born champions. They are grown and you make a choice to be a champion.  It takes more than just DNA or desire to be one.  It takes passion, commitment and dedication.  This is true for how we show up for everything we do.  There is an expression:  How we do something, is everything.  We are creatures of habit.  How we do something is how we do everything.  Today I am joined by Sky Blossoms to share her experience on the topic of bringing a championship psychology to your relationships.

She is a relationship strategist for high performers as well as an author and speaker.  She received her medical degree and for more than a decade she studied psychology and alternate therapies.  Sky’s humble beginnings of growing up in the Ukraine, sparked her drive for extraordinary life experiences.  It prompted a relentless search for answers.  Her personal journey through pain, disappointments, and failures taught her vital lessons and led the discovery of bliss and fulfillment that she now shares with others.

On our program, you will learn three tips to dramatically improve your relationships.  How to understand your wants and desires intuitively.  A simple tool to discharge negative emotions.  You have such an energy about you.  It was nice meeting you in Las Vegas.  It’s great to have you here.

S:  Thank you Penny.  I am thrilled to be here.  I love your shows.  I am honored to share my knowledge and expertise with your audience.

P:  We are eager to get to know about you.  You have an interesting background about how you made it to where you are today.  Can you share a brief history about your journey?

S:  My early life experiences inspired my passion for relationships.  I was born and raised in Ukraine.  My parents struggled financially.  They often didn’t have enough money for food.  Out of desperation, they went to work in Germany for nearly four years.  Since they worked in the military base, the rules were strict and they couldn’t take me with them.  I had to live with my Grandparents in another place.  About 11 years old, I entered into some of the darkest years.  Depression and suicidal thoughts.  My parents improved their financial situation.  My clothes were getting fancy and my peers could only dream of the stuff I was getting.  But I learned that material stuff wasn’t anything compared to relationships.  I wanted to be with my parents.  I would have given all of that up.  I changed schools five times.  That taught me that the skill of relationship. It is one of the vital skills in life.  Later on, moving into another country and adapting to a new language, building new relationships from scratch. That is one of greatest skills in life you can acquire.  That is what brought me to do this professionally.  Also, personal fulfillment is by far one of the greatest contributors to happiness in life no matter how much you succeed in business.  There are two things that we ultimately need.  A great state of health and personal relationships and fulfillment.

P:  Those are things we take for granted until we don’t have them.  A great state of health and having great relationships.  So many people grow up in their family environment and they take for granted that they have and see their parents on a regular basis.  It must have been so challenging to be without your parents and all of the new schools and what not.

S:  I am actually glad I faced the challenge early on because I see if from working with my clients and working with families that it is often taken for granted.  We forget sometimes to eat or work out from running around, our system starts to break down.  The same with relationships.  We think its ok to watch tv vs. to spending quality time with your spouse.  Until we are faced with a divorce.  It’s better to do preventative measures vs. fixing problems when they arise. 

P:  There tends to be an urgency when all of a sudden it rises to the top.  That is why so many people search for balance because we live in an urgency culture.  We are reactive vs. proactive.  That is why we are talking about this today.  Why relationships affect our psychology.  I agree that we need to keep those things in the forefront.  Great state of health, one of the four components, is physiology.  It has to do with our state of health.  The other three elements in there which are purpose, language, and focus, they really have a lot to do with how we manage our energies.  Also how we filter those into the relationships and how we develop those relationships both with ourselves and with others.  We need to remember the core relationship with ourselves.  Do you agree?

S:  I agree!  Moreover, the quality of your relationship with yourself reflects in the the quality of the relationship with others.  I keep seeing the confirmation of that time and time again with every client I work with. 

P:  I believe that it is one that people tend to focus on in the least.  We are missing out of some of the most important elements because we are focused on other areas.

S:  I agree.  I think nobody is teaching that.  In school, we are not taught that.  Our inner dialog is so important.  Our self-image is crucial and how our relationships are formed.  Our belief systems and our outlook on life in general is all reflected back to us with our quality of relationships with coworkers, colleagues, everyone.

P:  When you were younger, you went into bouts of depression.  That is a certain area that talks about where your self-confidence and self-image was, right?

S:  At that time, my depression was due to my parents being away and I was missing them.  The whole environment was new and I felt like a victim.  It was done to me, against my will.  At the early age it is difficult to take ownership of that.  It was not happening to me it was happening for me.  I took it as a gift.  It honed my skills of forming relationships and cultivating them took years.  You start valuing relationships once they are taken away from you.  When you have to move to another city and your best girlfriend stays, it takes dedication to stay in touch and stay connected.  Here I notice people don’t even look at each other anymore.  In a social setting, everyone is glued to their gadgets now.  No more conversations anymore.  You don’t even know what the other person is feeling anymore.

P:  How did you go from medical school to deciding to become a relationship expert?

S:  It wasn’t conscious to be honest with you.  My interest and passions for psychology and human behavior came personally.  I was studying all of the information I could get on human behavior.  For as long as I can remember, it was helping me to cope on my own life challenges.  After medical school, I moved to the United States.  Here, I went on an exploration of careers.  I felt like being a dentist just wasn’t my calling.  To be a dentist or a doctor, you must be passionate and love it and feel called to do it.  Otherwise, I had no right to take that responsibility.  I felt like I liked it, but it was not IT.  I have done all kinds of things from hosting tv shows to working for video production companies, but I had the question of what is it that I am supposed to do?  Interestingly, sometimes life prepares you for what it is that you are supposed to do.  Your purpose is not always revealed to you all at once.  For me, it came in the form of inspiration.  I wanted to write my book.  My journey was unfolding in ways that most people would call miraculous.  Synchronicity after synchronicity.  I have learned that whenever I step on the right path, it unfolds before you.  If you are moving in the wrong direction, you are faced with obstacle after obstacle.

P:  That is an important point.  Some people I have come in contact with feel lost.  Maybe it’s a mid-life thing with some, they feel kind of lost.  They are not really sure what that passion is for them or their purpose.  I think it’s important to point out here that we don’t have to be born knowing what that is.  There are few people that are born into knowing that they are a dancer or a musician.  There are so many people who as you said, that through their life’s journey, they have found out later in life what it is that really takes hold of them.  Really brings their life and other’s lives to a whole new level.  I just wanted to point that out.  If you are in that place that you are not sure, take comfort in the fact that know that this is all preparing you for your next steps.

S:  If I may add, think of yourself like a piece of coal that is born to be a diamond.  When you are born as a coal, you don’t know yourself as a diamond.  You might need to go under some extreme conditions of pressure and high temperature before you can shine your brightest. 

P:  I love that.  Thank you for sharing that.  It’s time for a short break.  Stay tuned as we get into more depth with Sky Blossoms.

Interview Bill Walsh | Quantum Productivity

I am so excited today and want to welcome you to our first episode.  You are here because you want more.  You want the knowledge, the skills, and the resources on how to achieve more in your life.  By this, I mean, have your cake and eat it too.  Health, love, money, and balance.  Take charge of your productivity will do more than inspire you.  It will open you up to a new perspective.  For our first show, we are going to talk about dramatic productivity growth, or quantum growth in your productivity.  We want to get as much out of life as possible.  It is my experience that quantum productivity occurs when we learn how to manage our energy vs. our time.  This radio program is dedicated to you gaining new insights and perspectives around the ten core elements of time and energy management.  We will be speaking with various authors to get their perspective on those areas.  It’s important to know that these areas are relevant to you individually but also your business.  Strategies are cross contextual.  Today, we are so honored to have Bill Walsh here to talk about his concepts.  He is CEO and founder of Business Coaching Venture Capital Firm Power Team International.  Bill hosts and speaks all over the world.  He loves to help people to understand specifically what it takes to build business successfully.  He is a venture capitalist accomplished author, speaker and radio personality.  Bill, I am so excited to have you here today.  Welcome.

B:  I am excited too.  Congratulations on your first show Penny.  Everyone listening, this is a show you want to plug into all of the time.  I know the quality of your work. 

P:  Thanks Bill.  I have seen your passion in helping people grow their business.  I would like you to share what really motivated you to get into self-development?

B:  I was about 14 years old I was around individuals where the parents would take their kids and go racing.  Certain parents had every weekend off.  They could leave on a Friday and come back late Sunday night.  They couldn’t worry about going to work, and they had extra money.  It was about quality time with quality people.  They owned their own time.  They told me you need to figure out what it takes to find something you are passionate about and you will live a life that only some people can dream of.

P:  I like what you said about owning their own time.  That is what take charge of your productivity is about.  Owning your time.  From watching other people’s parents you saw what you wanted for yourself.  We want to learn from the best.  Could you share what and who really influenced you the most?

Quantum productivityB:  My dad did.  He was an electrician and he obviously worked unbelievable hours.  He would put in x amount of hours and then get a check for that.  He also said to me, do what you love.  Whether you fail or not, is part of the story.  It will work out as long as you are serving people.  He was one of my first coaches.  Football, baseball.  Even though he worked during the day, he still coached.  As I got older, I selected mentors.  I looked at individuals that lived a life of quality and integrity of serving lots of people.  I figured out ways to get connected with those individuals.  People like Brian Tracy, Les Brown, John Grey, and I have been blessed with work with the sharpest people in the world.  By creating value first in their lives and then building an amazing relationship with them. 

P:  Mentors are so important.  To the listeners, who are your mentors?  I like how you said select those people to have as your mentors.  I want to encourage the listeners to make a note to select their mentors.  What characteristics do they want to aspire to?  What leaders do they want to follow?  So important. I want to ask you about your book.  You talked about the eleven obvious laws of business success.  Can you share what are these laws and uh, what inspired you to create these?

B:  Most of the laws are common sense.  It’s not that we don’t know these things, like serve others at a high level, or how important our time is, or how to understand our own value.  What happens is we get clouded.  People watch tv and it is designed to pollute your mind.  People thing garbage in and garbage stays.  When it stays, it pollutes.  Until you go back to the basics, mastering the mundane, most people like to get up early or go to bed late.  What if you were totally inspired, that is one of the big things I talk about in the book.  I believe motivation is a spark.  To start the juice flowing.  The problem is you can’t push people to do things.  It’s like pushing a rope.  It doesn’t work.  Inspiration is something that will pull you where you are going.  Imagine waking up so inspired about your life that you get pulled into your success.  What happens if you motivate a bunch of idiots, what do you have?

P:  A motivated bunch of idiots.

B:  They are all jumping around and not going anywhere.  Then the old self-doubt comes back in.  When you can truly inspire someone, they get pulled into their lives in a form of passion and purpose.  They know in their mind and heart where they are going.  That is what people find a powerful presence to succeed.  It comes from within.  Not the outside.  Those are some of the things I talk about.  It’s about common sense wrapped around in stories.  All of the stories you hear about are about 15 years in the making.

P:  I like how you said inspiration vs. motivation, I had an amazing mentor a number of years ago who said, he is not here to motivate me because the motivation comes from within.  He is here to take away any roadblocks that keep me from moving forward.  I thought is was an insightful way to look at motivation.  You have to motivate yourself. 

B:  You can motivate all you want but if you don’t educate, they are going to die.  What I have learned is that you don’t know something until you live it.  Once you live it, you can own it and know it.  I do believe that external motivation is never going to move you very far.  Internal inspiration will get you as far as you want to go in life. 

P:  Energy management.  It’s not just about the time.  So many people are focused on the time aspect on it.  They will get more productive through time.  But I believe it’s about the energy aspect of it.  Passion and purpose are two important elements that make up energy management.  What is your feel about that?

B:  I believe that energy is neutral.  People think money is evil or it doesn’t grow on trees.  I believe money equals energy.  When you provide more value, you are going to get more money.  Most people spend most of their life chasing money.  Usually those people stay broke.  If they are not financially broke, they are mentally broke.  I believe that everything is energy.  We are all energy.  Some people come into a room and they literally dim the lights.  Other people come into the room and it brightens up.  You can feel their presence, even when they are not present.  It’s not about staying away from negative people.  The universe will always give you more of what you don’t want.  If you focus on negative people, you will attract more negative people.   Where if you begin to focus on only spending time with inspiring powerful, high integrity, over the top people, that is what you will attract in your life. A friend said, when you let go of some of the old, you can make room for some of the new.  Its a great principal.  So many doors open up and new people come into your life.  They are the ones who deserve your quality time. 

P:  We are going to take a short break.

P:  Welcome Back.  We are about to get into the heart of the show of quantum productivity.  I like to ask everybody who is on my show this question.  How do you define productivity and why?

A:  What happens when you are not in the picture?  I believe that quantum productivity starts with how effective are you when you are not in the wave.  So often I tell people, we operate many times from a place of unconscious competence or incompetence or conscious incompetence.  I understand that the subconscious mind works while you sleep.  I share a process called ten before ten.  Every night you will write out the ten most important things you can do before ten the next morning to be the most profitable and productive things.  We don’t realize how powerful our mind is.  Our mind will work on things even while you are sleeping.  If you write them down, you will sleep better, sleep less and sleep deeper, and you will wake up with many of the answers you are looking for relating to the task you need to accomplish the next morning.  You may even learn how to delegate.  How to learn about the things you are good at and delegate the things that you suck at.  Stop doing the things that you truly suck at.  It sucks the life out of you.  It’s a double suck.  Once somebody can step into doing only the things they are great at, they are going to understand what quantum productivity looks like.  You will begin to see how everyone around you moves in slow motion.  You become an intuitive performer.  We build them.  You only operate from a place called unconscious competence.  You wake up and know exactly what you are supposed to be doing.  You step into the flow.  You see this in sports.  You watch athletes like Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods and singers like Céline Dion.  They literally own that space they are in and they focus only on the things that they are great at. 

P:  Going back to energy.  When we are optimizing our energy by flow, getting into the place where we are most energetic.  Doing things that build our energy.  Not doing things that suck your energy.  I love the ten before ten.  Imagine, if you are getting ten of the most important things done before ten am.  How great do you feel? 

B:  Try this for fourteen days.  You will see your productivity will grow.  What else happens is that your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions and your actions become your habits.  Successful people consistently have successful habits.

P:  A habit requires a lot of energy.  I am still trying to do something that is not 100 percent ingrained into who I am.  This ten before ten starts out as a habit and then it should become part of who you are.  That is the step through into that flow. 

B:  You know when you are in flow.  Smooth incredible days.  What are the top three things you can do?  Most great CEO’s don’t do more than two or three things great.  The minimum wage for a millionaire is $524 an hour.  If you goal is to be a millionaire, are you doing things that are at that wage range. 

P:  I heard you say millionaires delegate everything.  From my experience in coaching with Tony Robbins and Chet Holmes, people learn right up front as we start to work together, that the strategies they had were great in getting them to where they are now, but they are not necessarily the right skill set they need to get to the next level.  How do you think people can really change their mind set to get into this flow more often?

B:  It starts with motivation and inspiration.  They don’t just find their motivation.  They start with a big vision and that vision will pull you to where you are going.  Like Starbucks.  Everything with this company was about being the biggest brand.  The world’s largest experience coffee place.  So much is about the power of focus.  Step into your vision.  I believe as children, we are born with great gifts.  Somewhere along the line, the wires get crossed where we are told we are dumb or stupid.  We are put into an educational program that is designed for these kids to fail.  In Chicago, less than fifty percent graduate from high school.  We have the best universities in the world.  At some point, we are polluting the minds of our kids to move them away from having that powerful vision.  It’s about committing and focusing and never quitting.

P:  Do you believe there is an x factor for quantum productivity?

B:  I think you have to realize we are not productive.  That we are not doing our greatest skill set.  People take jobs for their whole lives in positions that they can’t stand.  Shea Vaugne is one of my close friends.  Her son is Vince Vaughne.  I saw the movie Internship.  It didn’t get good reviews and it didn’t surprise me because anything that pushes people to step outside the box, those movies don’t work because many times we don’t like to see people do well.  We like to see people fail or get hurt.  The reason people watch the news is because they want to see people do worse than them.  A big part of the x factor is that everyone has to realize that it is possible.  Once you can go from realizing that oh, I am not sure to its possible.  That is what the movie was about.  What was possible?  The x factor is YOU.  You are the x factor.  Are you going to X yourself off of the screen or off of the game? 

P:  Tap into that vision.  Step into it.

B:  Everybody has their own set of green glasses.  If you wear these big coke bottle green glasses, the only thing you will see is green.  You will think everything is green even though people are telling you otherwise.  So, once you can remove the green glasses and really get a view of what is going on, its incredible how powerful your vision becomes. 

P:  Opening up new perspectives.  It’s time to take a break.

P:  Welcome back.  We are speaking about quantum productivity with Bill Walsh.  You mentioned the movie the Internship and that people are not excited about movies that talk about what is possible and what occurred to me is sometimes with movies that are inspirational like that, people are fearful of it bringing them to the edge of their comfort zone.  I think a lot of what hold people back from success is that coming up to the edge of the comfort zone, the fear factor.  Can you share some of your views around that?

B:  I think that fear is what leads to self-doubt.  Self-doubt is the number one killer of small business.  Once we fail a couple times at something, we decide to quit.  That is what kills SoHo’s or people in the marketing industry.  I wish they would tell people that the two equations for success is this:  persistence plus failure equals success.  So all of a sudden, if they can remove the fear, he is how you do it.  After years in business, with absolute faith there is very little room for fear.  Understanding how someone else has already has done this.  It means you are not the first person to do this.  Are you going to commit to your big vision or big dreams or are you just going to talk about it.  Rockefeller said as he got older he would stop listening to what people would say, he would watch what they do.  Fear is going to always be there.  The question is are you going to let fear or faith take over?  If you truly have faith in where you are going, you will go far.  What books do you read?  Who are the people you spend your time with?  I challenge you today, and you want to achieve big goals, with massive results, who is on your team?  Surround yourself with really smart people.

P:  In sports, if you want to get better, play better players.  That will help my game. 

B:  Watch how they are playing.  Are your fab 5 who inspire you and move you?  Or are you the smartest person in your group?  If you are the smartest, then you need a new group.  I am also a big believer in that imagination is the open gateway to all of your unlimited possibilities.  You are powerful.

P:  Look at imagination and visualization.  A strategy that successful people use.  Olympic sports or business success.  They talk about Michael Phelps and his visualization of him getting into the water and moving through.  Getting in that flow.  Standing and collecting the gold. There were studies that showed that people who were doing lay ups actually did the same as those who practiced constantly.  A learning mindset is important, what role do you think learning plays in our productivity?

B:  Knowledge is power but sometimes I would have ignorance on fire than knowledge on ice.  I have met very smart people who are broke and idiots who are wealthy.  Learning is paramount as long as you put the learning to use.  If you think because you have done all of the studies, that you will get it.  Learning is only one part of the process.  I can give you all of the books and tapes and videos on how to be great, but learning by itself can be dangerous.  Learning in combination with experience.  I believe that one of the greatest ways to learn something is to do it.

P:  The three most dangerous words out there is I know this.  Right?  I actually heard there was a study that showed that the brain actually shuts down from listening and bringing in new perspectives and insight when you go into that mode of I know this.  It’s important to be open. 

B:  From experience you learn, what you did right and what you did wrong.  Once you start to realize that nobody has all of the answers.  We all have tons to learn.  When you stop learning you stop living. 

P:  That learning mindset that really takes us to the next level. 

B:  What do you do that you work on to really step into your most powerful amazing presence.  I know you have so much to share.

P:  Tapping into a vision and passion.  I have always been an optimizer.  I started with technology and improving prophecies.  I moved to the mindset and how people think.  How to make things better.  I think the key is the learning.  I always want to keep myself in a perspective when I can look at something that doesn’t go the way I want it to saying, ok, what does that mean exactly.  How can I learn from this?  Steve Lindor taught me these four questions:  What does that mean and what else could that mean?  You look at the different perspectives and what can I learn from this?  How can I integrate this?  Then it’s about sharing with others.  I learned a lot in Switzerland and their culture. 

B:  With all of the inventions in technology we will get more productive.  What I recommend is that get all of your most productive things done first thing in the morning.  You now have the rest of the day to yourself. 

It’s time for our last break. 

Welcome Back.  Bill our listeners have gained some powerful new insights today.  Can you tell them how they can find out more about your programs and what you have to offer?

B:  Thanks for having me on.  If you love the show, share Penny’s show with everyone you know.  The world needs more Penny Zenkers.  To get more information on my programs ipowerteam.com you will find information about our Rainmaker Program, Business Success coarse, our Speaker Camps and our Masterminds.  I thought it would be cool to give out a free gift today.  About $200 audios, Cd’s and downloads and free tickets to our conferences that take place in Dallas, Miami, Boston, New York and LA.  EMVPsuccesspack.com  Go there on the website and put in the code 7777.  It will make the entire product free for all of the listeners here today.  It is a great gift for you and special thanks to Penny and all she does.  Anything that I can do to support what you are doing, just let me know.  I am one of your biggest fans. 

P:  Thank you and that’s incredible.  I know you are modest and you don’t want to talk about your programs in details.  I have a friend who just came back from your Rainmaker program.  She said it was incredible.  It helped her from start to finish on getting her business and business plan together.  Could you share a bit of information to our listeners who are entrepreneurs and want to tap into something or are just in need of some of your extra support? 

B:  I created a course called the Rainmaker Summit about 8 years ago.  I was a trader than real estate, then all kinds of companies as a consultant to help them grow, build and turn around their businesses.  Successfolio was created.  It is a business plan with an awesome website, great time management skills.  Become a great leader, have great systems and be accountable.  That course is called the Rainmaker Summit.  We now teach it 24 times a year all over the world.  We are looking for coaches and speakers to help piece these programs.  It is packed with two and half days of amazing content on launching, growing, and building your business with a whole year of follow up.  The entire program for you, your spouse and your kids, is under $3000.  We run a full private equity group who looks for companies to invest in.  We provide some of the best education in the world for business owners who are serious about creating and building a successful business around something you are great at and can serve lots of people.  If you want to learn more go to IPowerteam.com or watch the entire presentation right at rainmakersummit.com  Penny has some links on her site, you might be better off doing that.  There will be a special link on there as well as some more free gifts.  That is the best way to get more information.  I am really just here to serve you and all of your listeners. 

P:  You offer so much value and I have always been impressed with people I have talked to and the integrity I see myself directly from you.  I am attending your speaker’s camp in about a month.  I know some people who have gone through it that have raved about it because they have gone from not having that confidence to stand up what they are talking about to really being able to do that, in a way they can create a speech and also in a way they can get up and also sell their program.  To be able to inspire people from stage but also to enable them to continue that process of learning and taking it with them. 

B:  I created a speaker course because I was tired of the ones I saw out there.  It is a program called Done for You program.  You come for five days with me and we work on taking your passion, what you are great at, I will take that mold of what you already are and we have a done for you course for you.  We shoot your video, give a 90 minute presentation from selling on the stage.  What nobody else would do in the industry.  That is the neat part, we produce over 100 events a year around the world.  All different genres backgrounds.  It’s designed for someone who is very good at something and they know it serves lots of people, they are not being paid for it.  They would like to magnify their message.  Only 20 students per class.  Its $15,000 for the program.  When we finish, we own our own speakers bureau.  If we put you on a stage and you make $50,000 you send us a check for $5000.  Most speakers are great at speaker but not great at product creation, running an event, etc.  Some have a hard time getting bookings to speak.  Because of our contacts, I give you access to that.  It is without a doubt become a paramount course that people are on a waiting list to get into this program.

P: For those of you who chimed in late.  You can listen to the interview online.  Bill Walsh CEO Power Team International.  International speaker and overall just a good guy.  He walks the walk and talks the talk. 

Thank you Bill for being here. 

Interview Robert Joslin Pt. 3 | Time and Energy in Project Management

Welcome Back.  Today I am here with Robert Joslin.  Program and project management specialist.  He is talking about planning and other elements that make up the ten core elements of time and energy management.  So many of them are involved in managing projects. 

P:  In this segment, before we close out, I want to talk about time and energy.  Projects are time specific, right?  Also, there is an amount of energy that needs to go.  We talked about the purpose that creates a certain energy and value.  I am a firm believer that energy is the x factor in productivity.  I also believe in the dynamic of? How a team will work together and be effective.  What is your perspective on time and energy?

Time and energy in project managementR:  Projects are all about people.  People will put energy in if they see a benefit for it.  Invariably people doing something for personal reasons.  If you can have a group of highly motivated and see the benefits themselves, then they will put their all into that project.  It reminds me of a book I read a few years ago.  A British doctor who looked at his diet and also drew blood samples to determine and measure specific levels.  From changing diet, they made phenomenal discoveries.  It comes down to diet, motivation and beliefs about what you can achieve.  That is the energy required to succeed.

P:  If energy is coming down to the individual, then what does communication play?

R: Communication is considered by project management.  It’s one of the key strengths that are required.  As a manager, you have to communicate what is going on.  But also, it is listening as well.  It is listening and talking.  You need to actively and passively be able to communication.

P:  You can actively see how well your communication is actually being received.  If it’s not being received the way intended, then you have to shift your strategy.

R:  When I work with project teams, I can tell right away what needs to be adjusted by listening and observing their behaviors.  One of the key factors of project managers is watching people and understanding their traits and habits or what their choices mean. 

P:  It is what people are saying and what they are not saying.  By listening you can determine that. 

R:  Also, it’s the body movement and language that is so important to watch while they are in meetings interacting. 

P:  I always say that the quality of our life is directly related to our language.  So thank you PMI that is verifying what I am saying is true in the way of project management.  We are talking about people, what are the biggest resistance factor in project management?

R:  One word:  Change.  People don’t like change.  Even if it is the solution to a better working environment.  Many projects or programs, where you will get people that are for the program and people who are against the program.  If you can actually work with the people who are against the program, and they are passionate, if you can understand that motivation and their concerns, you can turn them around to be the biggest supporters for the program.  The key word is passion.  If it’s negative, they can destroy your program.  If it’s positive they may go to the end of the world.  They will go the extra mile to make sure you will succeed.  The answer is change. 

P:  Yes, it brings people outside of their comfort zone.  They are not used to it.  I like what you said about people who are passionate.  Whether negatively or positively passionate that you can tilt that scale from one level to another.  That comes back to the point about energy.  Someone who is negative and against something, that is a lot of energy.  I agree with you that with understanding them in the right way and being able to address that person in the way they see the world, and what is important to them, may bring them to the biggest supporters.  It’s shifting that energy from negative to positive.  Energy management is so important in teams as well as in individuals.  Do you agree?

R:  I totally agree with that.  If you look at the types of people that like change, and the people who like stability, like operations, when you observe their specific behaviors and see what they are like, then you can get a very good idea of who may be potentially resistant and also like a warning sign of how to approach these people.  You can see their values and it makes it easier to communicate with them.  That is the difference between success and unsuccessful project managers. 

P:  That doesn’t only go with projects that is relationships.  That is dealing with your spouse, children, in laws, whoever you know, whether it’s your coworkers and someone at a store.  Your clients your customers.  It’s the same thing.  It is understanding the best way to communicate. 

R:  The difference between the working environment and the personal environment is the working environment you can be more objective.  In the personal environment, you sometimes get clouded by your feelings and then you may not understand the situations because of the bias.  That is why once you start getting personal in the work environment, then you will lose.

P:  By keeping that disassociation you will see things objectively and makes a world of difference.  To your point about emotions coming in and creating additional challenges, myself and Dr. Dunkin have a program around that called trigger management.  It’s a method to help people to deal with triggers and emotional responses.  It helps them to take a step back and look at something more objectively.  We are talking about people and change and complexity.  Not that this has ever happened to our listeners, but sometimes projects don’t go well and we don’t meet the objectives and timelines, what do you do?

R:  Normally you will have traits in a project that will show up.  Frustration.  Issues are becoming increasing.  This is where you have to stay cool.  This is where you see the difference between an experienced and inexperienced project manager.  An inexperienced one will start to blame get stressed and start to micromanage.  That is the last thing you want to do.  You need to have an objective approach and bring in the key people.  Look and see what the problem is or what the problems are and then if you know the schedule, you have two ways to address this.  Crashing and fast tracking are the official terms.  Adding more people.  More people is great when you have a lot of money.  The downside is that you lose control.  You have to think carefully when adding more people.  Another option is fast tracking is where you overlap the tasks as much as possible.  If you fast track, you may increase the risk of things going wrong.  So, these are options that are ideal but do come with potential risk.  Talk to your team members and stay calm.

P:  Tell us about your book and how people can get a hold of you.

R:  I have a forum on LinkedIn for my students and for program managers for discussions.  I don’t have website because of time I want to devote to my books and my PhD.  In due course, I will create a web presence for all us like-minded people.

P:  Anything else you want to share with our listeners before we close out?

R:  Take time to listen and observe and to think.  It’s so very important.  Spend less time rushing around and spend more time planning.  If you plan properly, then you will spend less time running around.  Also, understand the difference in cultures.  America is a multicultural environment.  If you want to be productive, don’t force it.  Try to be as natural as possible.  It will come to you.  If you enjoy doing it, it will be far better than if its forced.

P:  Thank you so much for sharing your insights and expertise in project and program management.

R:  Thank you for having me.  I wish you and all of your listeners the best.

5 Ways to Leverage Twitter For Your Next Event

Twitter can make your event more productive.

Recent statistics show that 66% of Twitter users have discovered a new small or medium-scale enterprise or business on Twitter, 94% plan to purchase from the SMEs they follow and about 69% have purchased from an SME because of something they saw on twitter.

Twitter is a global space where people log on to so that they catch up on what is happening in the world now. A lot of event planners do not take advantage of this opportunity and this is why their event and whatever they seek to tell the world isn’t reaching the roof of the halls. Twitter can be used to build and gain your audience as well as create viable connections with people of value.

Event planners can use twitter as a resource for education, awareness, engagement for those who are in attendance along and those who are not. Twitter is a global space where people want to get short updates, be informed, engage with others.

Leverage Twitter

5 Ways to Leverage Twitter For Your Next Event

The following tips would help increase your chances of reaching them:

1. Reach Out to Influencers.

Social media influencers work as boom speakers. They say a thing and your target audience are all informed or are made inquisitive about the event. Perhaps you аlrеаdу hаvе gооd rеlаtіоnѕhірѕ wіth оріnіоn leaders but іf уоu don’t, gеttіng thеm іnvоlvеd wіth уоur event іѕ a grеаt way tо introduce уоurѕеlf and gіvе уоur еvеnt extra clout. They keep the conversation about your event alive. Just a mention of them can create even more exposure to the event or spread some key information.

2. Live Strеаmіng and Live Tweeting. If people cannot attend your event, you should take your event to them by live streaming and

If people cannot attend your event, you should take your event to them by live streaming and tweeting on Twitter. Vіdео іѕ thе bіggеѕt grоwіng trеnd оn Twіttеr, you can use youtube live, Facebooklive and other streaming platforms to include ѕоmе live ѕtrеаmіng in уоur lіvе twееtіng fоr guаrаntееd аddеd engagement. This makes your followers feel carried along, gives them an overview of what is going on and makes the next event a MUST ATTEND.

3. Oріnіоn Polls.

Involve people and attendees frоm thе bеgіnnіng by utіlіѕіng Twitter’s opinion роllѕ as a wау of hearing what they hаvе to ѕау аbоut the еvеnt оr make ѕuggеѕtіоnѕ. They соuld vоtе on аnуthіng frоm thе thеmе to thе tоріс оf thе keynote prior to the event to providing content for discussion based on the audience’s answers. Nоt оnlу will this еnсоurаgе уоur tаrgеt audience tо еngаgе with уоur event, it makes it more personal. Making the content more personal will еѕtаblіѕh a deeper соnnесtіоn. They will feel part оf thе рrосеѕѕ and the event will create a longer lasting impression because of how the content from the event impacts them personally.

4. Create your own HASHTAG.

Choose a hashtag fоr уоur еvеnt right at thе start оf thе рrосеѕѕ аnd ѕtісk wіth it. Keep іt ѕhоrt and be sure іt’ѕ unique. You will then be able to track your tweets with a search on Twіttеr. A hashtag search will only ѕhоw twееtѕ about уоur еvеnt. It allows people to get more information from a search and for you to track tweets. Promote your hashtag by іnсluding it on аll рrоmоtіоnаl mаtеrіаlѕ аnd encourage реорlе tо uѕе it іn your mеѕѕаgіng.

5. Hоѕt Cоmреtіtіоnѕ.

Crеаtіng a few competitions prior tо уоur еvеnt and during the event іѕ a great wау to kеер people іntеrеѕtеd аnd еxсіtеd. Offеrіng реорlе a chance tо wіn frее rеgіѕtrаtіоn оr VIP access оr рrіzеѕ оn Twіttеr wіll nаturаllу rеѕult іn engagement. One great competition that keeps people posting throughout the event is to provide a great prize for the person who tweets the most each day of the event and for the entire event. People love competitions and prizes, and it is a great promotional tool for you and your event.

Twitter offers a sphere of opportunities to those who can use it well and these tips will put your event on the edge of discovery. Use them effectively and build your audiences, promote important content, and gain valuable insights from your participants. With today’s social media environment and the easy access tools and resources, there is no reason not to engage your audience in valuable social media such as twitter.

Interview Robert Joslin Pt. 2 | Productivity and Efficiency

Welcome back.  This is Penny Zenker and I am joined with Robert Joslin.  Who is talking to us about program and project management and how to increase our productivity and efficiency.

R:  Thank You Penny

P:  I spent a lot of my time in technology as well as you.  I have always used it as a way to create more productivity.  How do you define productivity and why?

R:  The most efficient way of achieving something is time and cost. 

P:  The definition comes down to efficiency is that what I hear?

R: It depends on the goal.  If it’s on the academic side, you could be looking at an idea or a research paper.  On a production line, productivity could be so many cars, or books.  For an entrepreneur what you need to look at is the balance.  If looking at sustainable productivity over a period of time.  Doing a balance of things to ensure that you are continually productive.  It’s a mix of activities to insure a continuation of productivity.

Productivity and efficiency in project managementP:  I like how you explain that it depends on different elements.  That is why I ask everyone who comes on this show.  One person’s definition of productivity and what they want to achieve may be different from someone else’s.  It is a matter of balance.  I believe that productivity is more of a feeling as much as it is an outcome.  It’s how you feel about what you achieve.  You might say that I might be being productive or not productive, but you don’t know my goal was in the first place.

R:  There is obvious productivity with management by objectives.  You have to choose something that is quite obvious.  It is very personal and subjective and that’s why I mentioned it being about a balance of activities to achieve a sustainable productivity on an ongoing basis. 

P:  I agree.  What are the factors that you believe have the greatest impact on productivity?

R:  There is a lot of academic research on this.  Simplicity.  Anything that distracts you on what you want to produce.  A production line is easy to determine.  Like McDonalds. You are dealing with customer service and the efficiency of serving customers.  But also the customer reaction as well.  It depends on the industry you are in. 

P:  When you come up with that question as a factor or an element.  You talk about customer interaction or any type of communication for that matter.  I talk about it in previous sections when we talk about language.  We have communication with ourselves and with others.  Whether it’s our team or our customers and how we manage that.  I haven’t had anyone express it in that way before in my alignment with the ten critical elements.  That language that goes on with yourself and with others.  I wholeheartedly agree that language is one of the ten essential elements in time and energy management.  I would agree with that.  Are there any other key factors that you think stand out that should be discussed?

R:  Project management and balance of things.  For the people who are listening it’s about balance and knowing what it is.  It’s a natural sequence of things.  When I look at doing something like this coffee machine upstairs.  I will turn it on and I open the fridge, get the cups, and as its warming up I optimize the time to get my cappuccino. 

P:  Optimize the process of making coffee, only you!

R:  How do you optimize your environment?  When I run these large projects I lists tasks and issues and risks.  They can all impact the program.  They could cause the project to drown.  I have created this approach over the last 15 years.  I make sure that at every point in the project process, that I am matching sure we can cope with constant changing factors.  If you manage these factors in such a way, then you can keep productivity efficient.  If you don’t manage those things, your productivity will drop.  You will drown on a number of different things and you don’t know why because you lost control of your environment.

P:  I have seen that happen.  You are saying another really important is around the process.  By having a process, you are of let’s say reducing the distractions.  You are able to get greater productivity and focus on the tasks at hand.

R:  When you get phone calls coming in, how do you actually handle that?  Handling the risks.  Which ones do you enhance or do you try to mitigate?  If you manage these factors properly, your productivity won’t get derailed or dropped because of the constantly changing factors.

P:  I relate when you talk about managing the risks.  One of the elements of the process or of the planning and organization of the program in project management.  I lump that under proactivity.  To take a look at those risks ahead of time and think about what challenges might come up and be able to mitigate them ahead of time or at least control and manage them.  It will put you in a much better position for when something comes up.  It’s easier to deal with it.  My language for that is under the word called proactivity.  People can together with process and language and the other elements, can really make up having and maximizing productivity.

R:  There will be risks that you can anticipate but also there are the unknown.  It’s the ability to handle those and not go into a panic.  You have an approach to handle it.  If you can do that, then you can continue on.  If you didn’t have a process to manage these, then you will start getting into trouble. 

P: The glub, glub, factor.  You said drowning.  Let’s talk about stress.  In our first section, the uncertainty.  That can create stress for a lot of people.  Now you are talking about it in the area of not being able to anticipate everything.  How do we deal with those kinds of things?  What is the best practice with dealing with stress in managing these types of large projects?

R:  You have to have the personality to enjoy being on the edge of chaos.  People question your ability or your direction.  And if you have confidence in what you are doing, and also you have the A team or the Alpha Team, and also, trust, then it helps a great deal.  If you are uncertain or your boss doesn’t support you or your team is questioning then it’s a totally different story.  I think it’s really about starting a project, make sure you do enough planning.  Plan like a military operation.  Military strategy.  When you look at doing something, make sure you know the players.  How are you going to achieve.  Make a backup plan.  It puts you in a good position where you feel in control.  It’s a proactive way of reducing stress.  The opposite of stress is more adrenaline.  That is what you live off of.  Your team can achieve things that other teams just dream about.

P:  Planning, planning, planning.  The topic of this show.  At the end when we talk about project management, planning is an essential part.  Without the plan, the project will fail.

R:  There was a project I ran in Switzerland and it was an international project involving forty countries about, and I took six months to convince people that we could do the project this way.  It took nine months to complete.  Another member wanted to break it up and do it over a couple months.  But I knew that it could be achieved in nine months.  I picked a plan that had the alpha team on it and I knew the pieces to the project.  One part of that project was a country off on England.  They had problems with their banking system for two years, and so what I did was I used scouts in the program.  I put out a scout.  We found the best person on the island and then put a new banking system in and a new network with new pcs.  People couldn’t believe what they could accomplish. 

P: That was impressive.  I bet you get a lot of calls.

R:  There are other examples I can give.  It’s part of the tools and techniques that I use.  IF you can choose the right combination of tools and techniques with the right mix, it will make the difference.

P:  It sounds to me that it’s a difference between a black belt and a brown belt.  There are different levels of mastery.

R:  Yes.  If you want to achieve exceptional things you are going to find that many people won’t believe that you can actually achieve that.  They are willing to stop you sometimes.  They may feel out of their comfort zone or authority.  It comes down to who has the balls or guts to do.  And also, you have the team to support you.  Anything is possible.

P:  The project that you set up for six months to plan, and executed in nine months.  And also, when you put in a new banking system, would you agree with the statement that the more time that you plan upfront, the less time you need executing?

R:  I think it’s about 30% true.  It’s like a bell curve.  It depends on the complexity of the project.  There may be more variables to consider.  But also people, managers, don’t plan and also they may be afraid.  That is when things come up that you don’t plan.  That is where a good team comes to play.  When something changes, what is your response plan?

P:  Once again, it comes back to balance.  Not too much planning.  Over planning creates paralysis. 

R:  The research show that 25 to 33% should be about planning.  A big chunk of it. 

P:  I want to summarize that for people.  Planning is an essential part of project management as well as productivity and getting the greatest productivity.  We have researchers who say that 25 to 33% of your time would be spent on planning.  The optimal percentage.  Thank you Robert.  It is time for us to take a break.  Stay tuned.

Interview Robert Joslin Pt. 1 | Project Management

Robert Joslin is an engineering graduate.  He is a project and program management consultant.  He is an international trainer and an academic researcher.  He has experience in designing and initiating and program management delivery of large scale business, transformation, reengineering, infrastructure, strategy development including winning prizes for ideas and product innovation.  Previously he has been a consultant for a wide range of industries including telecom, banking, insurance, manufacturing and direct marketing while working for McKenzie and company.  He is currently studying for a PHD in strategy program and project management in Schema Business School in France.  He has coauthored a book called Program Management a Lifecycle Approach.  His input was around information structuring methodology.  His upcoming book is Portfolio Program and Project Success Factors.  Welcome Robert.

R: Thank you Penny.

P:  Tell us about your background and how did you get involved with this.

R:  Thank you. I was born in London.  I had a strict mother and moved to Switzerland about 20 years ago.  It started when I was in the cubs and scouts.  I won many awards and it taught me that I really enjoyed leading people and having an objective.  We did a lot of games.  Mind games.  I carried on into business.  Projects in business.  When I was in my apprenticeship I was part of the production line and operations.  I found there was a big difference between people working in projects and people working in operations.

P:  What would you say is the big difference?

Project managementR:  People who work in projects they live with uncertainty and are prepared to take risks.  People that work in operations like to know what they do in the morning in the next day, week, month.  In projects, every day is different.  Really it’s the uncertainty.

P:  Interesting.  It’s about uncertainty.  I was thinking that the difference is in the projects, I have been involved, I thought that it would be more of people that have more of a bigger vision and are able to, I can see the uncertainty element, and you have to get the moving parts to work at the same time.  It’s like cooking a massive meal for everybody.  And timing is just right.  Is that the uncertainty that you mean?

R:  You have a pretty good idea of what you are cooking.  All of the uncertainty in what you are trying to achieve and how you are trying to achieve it.  The uncertainty in the people. 

P:  The uncertainty is the dynamics in all that is involved.  And how to juggle those.  Project management and program management, Can you tell us the difference?

R:  Project management started back in the Egyptian times with pyramids.  Large projects.  And also small projects like cooking dinner.  A program is a collection of projects that are related in some way.  The benefits of doing them together under the umbrella of program outweigh the benefits of doing them individually.

P:  You said small projects can be things like cooking dinner or whatever.  People may not think of it but a lot of things we do day to day can be considered projects and combined together can be classified as program management.  Don’t you think?

R:  Yes, you just need to scale it up.  There are many project managements that are brought up to program manager.  Its ten or fifteen cooks working on different courses.  The grand finale is when dinner is served.  A program delivers benefits over a period of time.  The same is in cooking.  You have your entree, main course, desserts, you are delivering the benefits to the people eating over a period of time. 

P:  Drawing that analogy, I knew it would be interesting to have you on the show.  People can relate that analogy to their own life.  Whether it be cooking or the value and the benefits they are providing to themselves, family, organization and how they manage all of that.  And how the resources change.  The uncertainty of having different people involved.  That is what we are doing here today.  Drawing some parallel.

R:  During the course of my thirty years, one of the best project managers who was a secretary.  She was also efficient with her time.  She was good at running projects.  But when it came to certain complexity, she started to struggle.  She didn’t have the experience of that.  She would get to a certain level by managing that project extremely well.  Another is when I was working in London.  A CEO of a company who had a secretarial background.  She was an incredibly fair and efficient CEO.  She was a mother as well. 

P:  Some parallels for our listeners.  If you are a man, you will not fall into that category.  I’m just teasing.  As a mother, I can appreciate that.  We juggle a lot.  Project management and organization and planning and the skills going into that can be learned.  Would you agree?

R: Project management is anywhere in life.

P:  The more you practice the better you will be.  I want to go back to complexity.  I was talking with a client about how he has been able to get back time.  By reducing the complexity in his business, he has a huge assortment of goods he provides, he decided to cut away from his inventory the things that we not big sellers.  By greater organization and reducing the complexity, he was able to really simplify things to hand them over to someone else and also to be able to manage things better.  Do you think that is  an important part of the process?  Looking to simplify things?

R:  One of the areas I am looking at in research is complexity.  A lot of management research.  Found out there is necessary complexity and unnecessary complexity.

P:  We did another show with Steven Drews around value and adding value.  There were 8 wastes.  The Kaizan Process.  It is interesting and would love to dig deeper into that.  I don’t want to blow people’s minds if we go into the depth of that.  i can see that keeping your focus on what the goal is.  Profitability is the goal in my client’s case.  There is a certain amount of necessity that is required then there are items that are not necessary.  Is that what you are saying?

R:  You can’t reduce complex problems or make them simple either. 

P:  We use quotes from Einstein. It’s amazing how many years ago and his discoveries are more profound today.  I would like to talk about your upcoming book that talks about key success factors in project management and program management.  Can you share what are some of those key success factors?  Everyone wants to know!

R:  The differences of success factors and criteria.  I did research on companies.  If you look at a success factor in a project it is the elements and parts of the project that can be influenced to increase the likelihood of a successful outcome.  That is what everyone wants to achieve.  What needs to be there and achieve the outcome?  There is no point starting something if you have no chance of succeeding.  What is success?  I had a program where on the cost of budget the time, the iron triangle where you have the scope, the cost, the time, were all met.  What constitutes success?  How do you measure it? There is not a quick answer.  But if you put a gun against my head, I would come up with an experienced project manager.  Manager support, good communications and a good schedule.  There are many more as well.

P:  People who follow this show and my ten critical elements in time and energy management, I found four items I can rate under championship psychology.  Three of those items after listening to your success criteria, one is Purpose.  You have a clear goal that drives everyone.  The second is Focus.  You know what it is that you are looking to achieve.  The third is language.  Communication.  All of this needs to make sure everyone is alignment.  This is critical when managing multiple people and projects at the same time.  A championship psychology is so important not only for yourself, but as a team.  Whether delivering that as a management team or a project team.  I love that description because there are so many of those things that draw back to the ten essential elements.

R:  I would like to add that research shows the most success project managers are the ones that is over 50.  He is actually able to motivate his team.  A happy team will achieve more.  Experience is important as well as motivation.

P:  I would like to talk more about motivation when we talk about time and energy management.  I see motivation as part of energy management.  We talk about the success criteria, what is the first step you do when you are planning for a large project or a program?

R:  Create a project chart.  It’s like a two or three page document with the essentials of why you want to go into this project.  The objectives, the sponsors, the risks, etc.  Once you actually document it, you get a much better idea of what people are trying to achieve because it’s in writing.  Bigger companies can use it as a base of conversation.

P:  The Why of this.  Connecting to the purpose so that we all have the drive and motivation.  We need this because of the benefits, impact, etc….For the listeners that is the most important thing for anything you do.  Whether you consider it a project or not, sitting down to look at strategy for business, your family, whatever area of your life, this is cross contextual.  You want to connect with what is the purpose.  What is the why?  You will have an inner connection.

R:  In larger companies you need to make sure when you align the vision, the mission, the objective of the company, you will achieve directional intent.  You could jeopardize the investments if not done correctly.

P:  We are running to our first break.  For our listeners, we are talking about program and project management and its relationship to your projects in your life.  Stay tuned.  This is Penny Zenker with Take Charge of Your Productivity.