Starting and Managing a Business for Profits and Wealth Part 22: Deciding on Your Niche Area; The RIM Process

STARTING AND MANAGING A BUSINESS FOR PROFITS AND WEALTH
Part 22: Deciding on your Niche Area; The RIM Process.

Helping people find their niche is one area that I work with when it comes to training entrepreneurs. It is also one of the ways I use when I help trainers whom I coach to make decisions on which area of expertise they want to choose as their niche area and especially if they have more than one option.

I get my students to use a decision matrix which involves evaluating each option base on the following criteria; Readiness, Interest and Marketability/Viability. I call this the RIM process. They first go through a process of listing down their experiences and expertise. The next step is to list down their interest and areas that they are passionate about. From these two lists they then list down their possible subject/areas of training (when it come to trainers) or list the business options they have. Then they evaluate each of these options against the three criteria.

Part22_RIM Process

Readiness:
This criterion matches their possible options against their present capability, competencies or experience. If the option is some thing they can start doing tomorrow then they could give themselves high points for readiness. If they are not ready and it would take some time then they would need to put a lower score for this. Low score does not necessarily mean that this option will be eliminated. It just means that more work, research and thoughts need to put on to this idea.

It is therefore possible that we might want to do something that we are not ready for but we are very interested in. In which case we need to put efforts to develop the area. We will need to talk to people in that field or study existing successful models.

Interest:
When we choose areas we want to work on, interest and passion is definitely an important consideration. The exception is if you are ‘hungry’ and you need to make it work fast or if income is a concern. In which case you may choose to do what you are not interested as a temporary endeavor. However some people might tell you that they don’t really know what their passion is. Not surprising although if you are in that situation, it would be quite ‘tragic’. I would suggest that you would require to go through self-discovery process and you may need help from a coach. Evaluating interest level would help us determine future possibilities.

Marketability/ Viability:
This criterion would best be evaluated with help from experts or coach. I always tell my students that when you are hooked on to an idea it would always be a good idea. Simply because it is YOUR idea. Must be good. Getting a second opinion from the RIGHT person is necessary. I emphasis- the RIGHT person. Some of us may choose to consult our friends. Nothing wrong with that except that some people have this ability to talk as if they know some thing when they actually don’t.

Once the evaluation is done; putting points on each of this criteria saying 5 point for high level and 1 for lower, it is can be assumed that the one with the highest score would then be the best choice. However this is an indicative exercise not conclusive. The other point to note is the assumption that all criteria are equally important. Of course this is not necessarily the case. If there is no weightage given that the assumption is as such. However if it is not the case e.g. if Readiness is more important than Interest because you are hungry then we should assign more weightage to Readiness by putting a multiplier.

This RIM process is at its best help to provide directions and guidance It is certainly not a magic answer to entrepreneurs with too many options to choose from or a trainer looking to find niche area.

 

Making Network Marketing works as easy as you breathe

Most people went into the network marketing opportunity because it promises the dream of a wonderful life and great wealth. Indeed it does. However this dream remains unfulfilled for many. Some might and will end up making good income but find that they have to work very hard and in some cases having to make sacrifices that they would rather not make; such as time away from the people they love.
There is nothing wrong with network marketing. It is amazing business model. What might have gone wrong is the way you go about doing it. I tell people that if you are going to enjoy this business which will give you financial success and a dream lifestyle, you have to make it works as easy as you breathe.
Do you have to wake up in the morning and remember to breathe? Obviously not.
The reason why net work marketing is challenging for many is because they ended up doing things that they have to push themselves to do. When net work marketing feels like work and what more, work that you don’t like to do; then it’s going to be a real drag.
So how do we make net work marketing as easy as you breathe? By doing the things you do naturally. Consider one of the most powerful form of “network marketing “which unfortunately nobody gets paid. This happens when you go to a movie and tell someone about it. We do that all the time. And the movie people laugh their way to the bank.But what will make you do that willingly even when you don’t get paid? First; you must like the ‘product’. Secondly you must really want to tell a FRIEND about something you like.
So the first part is to develop a passion for the products of the company. If you have it …talking about it is an easy as you…….
Secondly you need to tell friends about it. Well that is fine if you have a lot of friends to talk to about your products. What if you have limited number of friends? Well I would ask you to make more friends or treat everyone you talk to as a friend you have not yet made and make them into friends
But breathing must become so easy that it become s a habit. Likewise net work marketing MUST BE a habit in order to make it work easily for you.
‘So the first habit we must develop, if you want to succeed in this business is to ”make a new friend a day.” Yes, make a new friend EVERY DAY, and I tell the people that I coach in Tupperware, not to go home until you make that new friend.
I say “make a friend” not “make a sale” (which would be great but would change your approach entirely) and I am not asking to say hi to someone and then immediately start talking about Tupperware or ask if “You want to join Tupperware, ah?”. You will only end up frightening them away.
So if you make new friend a day how many will you have in a month? 25? 30?> Well how many of them do you need to recruit? All of them ……great but you really only need two. How you possibly not succeed when you have acquired the habit of “making a new friend a day?
So when will you start………….make it as easy as you breathe.

Welcome to the New World of Multiple Sources of Income

I have been sharing the idea of Multiple Sources of Income( M.S.I.) since I started running Financial Intelligence seminar in 1997. I seldom have anyone disagree with me about the importance of having MSI. Most agree that it is no longer a wish or a nice-to-have. It is the rule of today. However while I can get a 95% agreement I estimate that fewer than 30 % of people out there really have any significant income sources beyond their main job or business. Why? Simple…we are all educated and brought up on a single income source idea. Whilst having more than one source of income is desirable it takes more than just a wish. It requires a change….a change within us. A change in Money Beliefs.

Why you need to have Multiple sources of Income?
In today’s society we need Multiple Sources of Income. Why? Knowing that change is inevitable and things are no longer the way they used to be, if you have only one source of income, that source can disappear overnight. The worst scenario is if you have only one source of income, and the number of days you can survive forward if you stopped working today is very small. You can’t afford to lose that source of income and that puts you in a financial corner.

If you are in a job …look at it today. If a machine or someone willing to take a lower salary than you can replace what you are doing today, you should be really concerned.

For example, just look back 15 years ago. If we needed to deposit cash into the bank, what did we do? We brought our money to a bank teller who counted it and updated our bankbook for us. Now what do we do? We go to a machine that helps us do the same thing.

So what happened to the bank tellers sitting there 15 years ago? Some of them will be promoted to managers, but as we know, promotion only happens to a small group of people. Let’s say out of 20 people, maybe one will move up the ranks. A few more will be able to stay in their positions. But what about the rest? Chances are, they are likely to get the golden handshake.

So you cannot count on having your job for your entire lifetime. You must change to be the one who gets promoted or better yet, you do not want to rely on that job solely as you would have Multiple Sources of Income.
Having Multiple Sources of Income not only helps insulate you in case of job loss but is a step towards creating more wealth so that you can do what you want to do. If your current job is not a passion job, then losing the job is a matter of time or choice, while you build your Multiple Sources of Income.

It’s no different from people who eat unhealthily and never exercise – until something happens to them. By then it may be too late. That’s why doctors always advised that prevention is better than cure.

The same applies here. Why wait to look around for opportunities until after something happens to your one and only paycheck? Start doing it today!

If you are in a business and it gives you the only income you have then you need to realize that we are living in a fast changing world today. Technology changes, government policies changes, market and economic changes are common happenings and will continue to be the case. Especially we are impacted by the fact that we are living in a globalised world. That means unlike twenty years ago whereby changes happening thousands of miles away does not affect us much or it takes a long time before it affects us but we are living in a different world today. Something happening in one country can affects the whole world; from terrorism and conflicts (such as a bomb in Bali) to economic downturns (such as housing loan problems in the United States) to diseases we never heard before (the Sars outbreak) to global warming and natural disasters (the Tsunami in Acheh and the never-before flood in Singapore). All these affects economy, and can affect you and your business.You never really will know.
So while you have a business you should still look at creating other sources of income especially passive income.

A second benefit from Multiple Sources of Income besides independence is choice. When we ask people why they don’t quit their job or the business that they don’t really find any passion in and pursue their dreams, many will say, “You don’t understand! I’ve no choice!”

But if you have only one source of income, isn’t that your own choice? Some of us are still going to say, “You still don’t understand! I’ve no choice because I need to pay all my bills at the end of the month!”

But we do have a choice! What stops us from creating Multiple Sources of Income? If we really want to, we can all find the initial time and energy it takes to create a Money Making Machine.

So it’s not that we don’t have a choice; it may be because we are afraid to take that new step! We are afraid to get out of our comfort zone and take action! We are afraid we could fail!

Yet it is paramount that we overcome our fears. Choice is the human person’s most valuable attribute. We are neither stronger nor faster than animals but we are superior. Why? Because we, unlike animals have a clear conscious mind to make choices. The ability to think, analyze, draw conclusions and choose is perhaps the greatest gift we have as human beings.

And choosing to set up multiple sources of income will give us even more choices after that. Let’s look at this again.

If you have only one paycheck, you have very little choice. You cannot just quit once you don’t like your job anymore. Why? Because yes, you do depend on that one monthly paycheck. However, if you have more than one paycheck, wouldn’t you have more choice?

The same goes with a business owner. Smart business owners make sure the spread their risk and would not put all their eggs in one basket.
The roadmap to being financially free and doing what you love is not rocket science. It’s quite simple and logical. If you start to create multiple sources of income, you position yourself to have more choices.

We can summarize it like that:

Multiple Sources of Income

More Choices

Freedom

Why most people will not have Multiple sources of income?

Many will not be able to actually create real and significant multiple sources of income. Why? Because most mind just does not entertain it. Some people think that income source corresponds directly to job so to get an additional income; we must find an additional job. This resides in the mind of many and that thought of having to do a second ‘job’ would defeat most people. Some would just say .they have no time. Or no money. Or no experience. And a whole list of barriers. Mental barriers.

Well at the end of the day one thing is clear if you really want to migrate from a single income source mentality to multiple source of income you need to be willing to change your mind set. Otherwise it just would not happen. The best and in some cases the only way to do that is to RE-EDUCATE yourself.

Why isn’t everyone a millionaire

The secret of creating wealth and ultimately becoming a millionaire is not exactly a secret. The information is already out there. If you go to any bookshops you will see tons of book written about this subject; each one having the own approach and their ‘secrets”. But then if reading a book can make you into a millionaire …the streets will be full of them. Don’t get me wrong I am not asking you not to read but it is obvious that it is just not enough.
If you go to any hotel you are bound to stumble across a money making seminar of some sorts; from forex trading to stock options to internet marketing. Yet people in general are not really getting richer. So what is the problem? Well it will not be inaccurate to say that as much as 70% of the attendees that went to all these three-day seminars go home and DO NOTHING. Well these events are not exactly cheap….but yet many are not putting into application what they learnt. Why is that the case?
It is not exactly the fault of these seminars. And I do not mean that you should not go to these events. I believe that most of these seminars teach you things that do work ……..if you put it into action. So what is the reason for non–action? The answer is obvious. It is easy to acquire the knowledge but if knowledge is all you need, then all the professors in the world will be very rich. It is only knowledge that we put into Action that determine the results. Unfortunately …changing the financial results require more than just a three day seminar and certainly more than just head knowledge. It simply requires ACTION….educated ACTION.
Unfortunately without follow through and support after attending these seminars the information remains as just knowledge….a nice manual, and lots of notes taken…but simply no ability or discipline to make real transformation…of beliefs, habits and hence results. Most of seminars lack follow through such as regular coaching (and not just some telephone calls from thousands of miles away) and support group such as masterminding.
Why won’t people take action to change their financial habits and therefore change their results? The reason is quite obvious…most of us are in comfort zones. Human being by nature has a strong resistance to change. We just could not get out of our comfort zone….our cosy job which we really have no passion for, or our familiar business that some of us go to everyday unenthusiastically and which is not giving the results that we want. This resistance are so strong that it sometimes defies logical reasoning and we give ourselves ‘reasons’ for not making the changes. We blame, we justify and we make excuses; no time, no money and don’t know how. Why won’t we get out of comfort zone and overcome our resistance to change? I believe it is because most have a fear of taking risk.
If we have something going on in our life that is Ok…not great but we have a reasonably good life; some would not want to rock that boat and take risk. In fact some people are so risk averse to a point of having no ability to take any risk of any kind. But if we think about it; we have only one life and if we decide to make our life meaningful and fulfilling; why would anyone compromise and not do the things that would get us out of the mundane, the meaningless and the mediocrity. Why won’t we take some risk? I would of course not ask you to take all kinds of risk. Any risk that we take must be calculated and educated risk. Learn before we jump in. And one more thing; don’t take more risk than you can afford to lose. But risk you must.
Every decision we make comes with some risk of some kind. Not taking any risk is like not making any decisions at all. So we procrastinate life’s decision. I like to add the biggest pain in life is the pain of regret; the regret of not making the decision to do something until it is too late. In my years of helping people to achieve a higher level financially; this challenge remains the biggest. As some says; “NO guts NO glory. “
Think about this “Is the rich a majority or minority? We all know the answer; the rich is a minority. So the question is if that is the case why people follow the majority? I learn a long time ago that “successful people are people who would do things that ordinary people would not do”. So it is really that simple….you cannot really be truly rich and successful doing what everyone else is doing. You have to do what most ordinary people won’t do; take action and take some risk.
The common responses to the question “why isn’t everyone a millionaire” is the “no opportunity” or simply “no Luck” It is an easy excuse and it is a SAD excuse.
Denzel Washington, the actor echoed an age-old wisdom when he said “Luck is when an opportunity comes along and you are prepared for it”. So if one is not prepared and when ‘luck” come either you cannot keep it and maximise it or you simply can’t secure it.
Indeed there are people who are’ Lucky” and either secure some opportunities or simply a windfall of some kind. But time and again, we hear of people who made the money fast through chance and will also lose the money equally fast .They cannot retain their “lucky” wealth. So even if opportunity falls on you but if one is not “prepared” it will not be yours.
I often say that opportunity is not seen with the eyes. It is seen with the mind. Half a glass empty is also seen as half a glass full. We can all see the same thing but we will interpret it differently. Some of us will chose to see it full. Some will see it as half empty. So if your mind is ‘not prepared” …it will always be seen as empty and barren of opportunity. It could be right in front our eyes and yet we won’t see.
Some choose to buy luck. Buy the numbers and sit there to wait for money to fall down from the sky. Good luck to you.
So why isn’t everyone a millionaire…well, most people don’t take action to get out of their comfort zone and they don’t take risk. And when the opportunity does come they are not ‘prepared’.

Defining Wealth; First Step

What exactly is the meaning of wealth? Robert Kiyosaki, author of “Rich Dad, Poor Dad,” define wealth as the number of days you can survive forward if you stop working tomorrow. This assumes you maintain the same lifestyle after you stop working.
This definition has a profound impact on me because unlike most people who tends to measure wealth in terms of possessions e.g. becoming a millionaire; Robert choose to define wealth from the perspective of capability. Thus, if you asked how many days you will last if you don’t go to work tomorrow and the answer you give is very small; then that would means that you are not very wealthy. But if your number is large then you can consider yourself…fairly wealthy. Obviously all of us wants to make the number BIGGER. However if you are extremely rich then your answer should no longer be a number it should be the word “FOREVER”; which means you should be able to survive forever without having to work anymore.
So this has an impact on our financial goals depending on whether we define wealth in this manner or in terms of the millions you want to accumulate. It will change our financial strategies. Some millionaires cannot last forever if they stop working tomorrow. This could be because their income will stop if they stop working and they have expensive life style. We have heard of successful rich celebrities who ran into financial problems when they are no longer working. I suggest to most people to adopt what I called, the Ultimate Financial Strategy; which is to reach Total Wealth (defined by the ability to say “forever” when asked how long you will last if you don’t work) within the shortest possible time.
The next logical question, of course, is, “How do we achieve this Ultimate Financial Strategy?” Someone once said to us that the key to being rich is spending less than you earn and investing the difference.
That, to a large extent, is true. However, where do we invest so that we can create more wealth? In our Money Mastery Community, we advocate building Money Making Machines.

The Money Making Machines (MMM)
There is a huge difference between making money and creating wealth. Many of us know how to make money but don’t know how to create wealth.
In general, if your objective is just to make money, it is not too difficult. As long as you are willing to work very hard, putting in time and effort, you will definitely make some money. However, creating wealth requires more than that. It requires you to have a different mindset; it requires you to work smart.
Creating wealth means creating Money Making Machines. So what exactly is a Money Making Machine? These so-called machines are the products, investments, services or businesses that will be your “sources” of income that will help you generate more wealth in the long run even as you stop working today. How?

First you probably need to develop and build the machine. Once the machine is built and if you build it well, it will then produce revenue for you without using your time. Initially you will probably have to put some time, effort and resources in order for it to start generating an income for you. After a while, the intensity of your efforts reduces but it continues to generate just as much or even more money for you…thus giving you residual and passive income.
Sounds too good? Let me give you a classic example of a Money Making Machine. Imagine you have written a book that is sold in all major bookstores. Each time a copy is sold, you receive royalty or profit from sales. Of course, you must first put in time, effort and resources to write, publish and market the book. But once that work is done, the money will keep flowing in from all future sales. This is called creating intellectual property.
Other examples of Money Making Machines include owning a car park, having a portfolio of blue-chip stocks and shares that pay regular dividends, owning a row of vending machines or having a piece of property that pays you a rental income. I am sure there are many more examples that you can think of.
Unfortunately, in real life, most people don’t focus on creating Money Making Machines. They focus on turning themselves into Money Making Machines! They put everything they have (time, effort, energy and even resources) into their jobs or business, which they may not even like!
Some of us who are in business think that we are creating wealth. But in fact, many of us are “married” to our businesses. We must be there to run our business every day. Without us, the business cannot function. So as business owners, what we have just done is we quit our previous jobs and “bought” ourselves a bigger job that eats up more of our time and energy. If we don’t truly love what we are doing but remain tied down, then we are no different from being employed. In other words their business is not the Money Making Machine.they are the one.
A job is only a short-term solution to a long-term problem. The real solution is to create Money Making Machines. With rising living expenses in most countries, it is almost impossible to live on the savings from your job after you retire! Many of us even have more than one job in order to survive.
While having Money Making Machines one of the indispensable components in the wealth creation process, it does take some initial effort to build them. Like all things in life, there are critical success factors. And getting the necessary training and networking within the right community of like-minded people, having the right resources and ability to turn creative ideas into actual products or services that meets the market needs will increase the possibility of success.
In the Money Mastery community, we work together to coach, guide and help build their Money Making Machines so that no single member is left alone on their own.

Looking For Opportunities

ENTREPRENEURS ARE A SPECIAL BREED – they are a brave lot who are willing to take risks and face an uncertain future, to start and manage their own companies. Perhaps they want out from the big corporation; perhaps they have ideals on how a company should be run and want to try their hands at it, or maybe they have a great business idea which they are sure will reap in the profits.

Opportunities are always knocking. The question is: “How does one recognize it, when it comes?”

Many entrepreneurs start a business when they are struck by a sudden bright idea – the miracle cure, the conceptual breakthrough. But this type of inspiration isn’t the source that entrepreneurs can generally rely on, or the sources that lend themselves to a process.

They are not repeatable on demand, cannot be taught and learned, and are seldom immediately applicable or even feasible. Leonard Da Vinci’s greatest works were mostly useless to him and his contemporaries because the technology wasn’t available to implement them and the society and economy weren’t prepared to accept them.

HOW TO POSITION YOURSELF FOR OPPORTUNITIES

If an opportunity does not drop on your lap, don’t fret. You can position yourself to be more susceptible to opportunities you are seeking. The following eight steps will put you where you want to be.

1. Decide what business area you want to be in.
2. Analyze the skills and knowledge required by that business.
3. Acquire them. LEARN at every opportunity.
4. Observe good examples of people in similar positions. Analyze their attitudes, your shortcomings and close the gap.
5. Test your knowledge and skills.
6. Become whatever it is you want to be and need to be.
7. Be around people in the business. Joint networks.
8. At the appropriate time, when you spot or sense the opportunity, go after it…

Opportunity search lies in looking for changes. Change is all around. More than that, we are facing change of unprecedented variety and intensity. And while some individuals and companies have prospered and grown in the midst of change, others have deteriorated and declined.

Why? Because successful individuals and companies recognize that things must change, and they position themselves to exploit these changes while others see change as only a threat and strive to protect themselves from it.

THE PROCESS

Great ideas shouldn’t be ignored when encountered, but neither should they be relied upon to assist in innovation. It’s like finding money in the street. You’re glad it was there and can certainly use it, but you wouldn’t leave your house hoping to find some to pay for the groceries that day!

There is an organized process to opportunity search. This removes the “hit or miss” danger, and reliance on that rare “flash of insight” or “breakthrough idea.” Decision Processes International, or DPI, an international management consulting firm which specializes in providing clients with processes to help them improve the quality of their strategic or operational decisions, gives ten areas of systematic search.

1. Unexpected Success, such as Ray Kroc’s pursuit of why he was selling so many milk shake machines to a place called McDonalds.
2. Unexpected Failure, such as Ford’s miss with the Edsel which should have alerted them to new objectives of the auto buyer, a change eventually exploited by the Mustang.
3. Unexpected External Events, such as the advent of AIDS which led to a boom in the rubber industry.
4. Process Weakness, such as the failure of the post office to provide a guaranteed system of next-day delivery, creating the phenomenal success story of federal Express.
5. Industry/Market Structure Changes, such as those undergone by the telephone industry, leading to the advent of CELCOM and other alternative carriers.
6. High Growth Areas, areas of the business growing faster than the population or user groups would otherwise justify, such as frozen foods dramatically increasing in sales, not because of new consumers, but because the two income family increases the need to have fast, easy-to-prepare dinners readily available.
7. Converging Technologies, such as the penetration of the video cassette recorder and the perfection of the technique to “color” classic black and white movies, creating new revenue opportunities for films gathering dust on the shelves
8. Demographic Change, in areas such as age, education, income, geography and buying mix, which has led to an entire industry catering to the recent phenomenon of the healthy, affluent retired.
9. Changes in Perception, which aren’t based on changing facts but rather changing interpretation of the facts, such as college students’ values changing from drop-out and protest to finding the best-paying job, leading to a growing industry in career planning for undergraduates.
10. New Knowledge, the rarest and most difficult source of innovation, such as Merck & Co, constantly researching new medical applications, having to achieve discovery, validation, government approval and distribution before parents expire, and thereby allowing generic drugs to compete at lower price.

PROCESS QUESTIONS

To seek opportunities in the various areas, we must first of all ask some process questions that will lead us to ferreting out the “hidden” opportunities. For example, some questions to ask in the area of Unexpected Success are:
* What unexpected product success have you had recently?
* In what geographic areas have you had unexpected success recently?
* In what market/industry segments have you experienced unexpected success recently?
* Which customer segments have provided unexpected success recently/
* What unexpected successes have your suppliers/competitors had recently?
* Which of your technologies have had unexpected success recently?
* Which unexpected customer/user groups have brought from you recently?
• Which unexpected sources have asked to sample/distribute/represent your product recently?

Another example is the following set of questions in the areas of Process Weakness:

* What self-contained processes exist in the organization?
* What weakness or “missing link” prevents better process performance?
* Why do some processes perform better at some times than at others?
* What bottlenecks does each of these processes have?

Then go on to ask the following questions:
* What opportunities and ideas can you develop from these unexpected successes/process weaknesses?
* What specific new product/service idea can you think of to satisfy this opportunity?
* What specific new customer/market segment could we serve?
* What specific new geographic markets could we seek?
* What specific new improvement programme could we develop?

INNOVATION

Innovation is the tool of entrepreneurs, and virtually anyone can be entrepreneurial. What differentiates the successful and the unsuccessful innovators is that the former have a system or follows certain principles. Here is a list of do’s and don’ts to remember when innovating. These are not rigid directives but rather a list of suggested guidelines that can help to improve the chances of success.

Do’s

1. Innovation needs strategic direction. There must be a “strategic fit” between any new opportunity and your current or intended business. Every business, over time, develops skills, expertise or a body of knowledge. Opportunities that exploit these strengths have a higher probability of succeeding. The further an opportunity strays form these, the less likely it will succeed.
2. Innovation is both conceptual and perceptual. Both the right (creative) and left (rational) brain are employed by the best innovators. Holistic thinking or the ability to see the “big picture” is a must.
3. The innovation must be perceived as bringing benefit to the person that counts most – the end user. Opportunity that brings value only to the provider is going to be short-lived. The innovation must provide win/win benefits for both parties.
4. Innovation, at first, must start small and be highly focused. It should do only one thing. Consumers can usually only swallow a little bit of innovation at a time. Rather than adding quantum leap features, you might do better by adding new features on an incremental basis over time. Continuous innovation is the key.
5. The best innovations start small. Do not start with grandiose expectations; aim at one specific target. Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak certainly did not foresee a US$1 billion company when they assembled their first personal computer in their garage.
6. Innovation does, however, aim for leadership eventually. If the opportunity is innovative enough, not to aim for eventual leadership would be to rob it of its potential.

Don’ts

1. Don’t try to be clever. The patent office is full of clever ideas that never got off the paper they were written on. Evolution, not revolution, happens more frequently.
2. Don’t try to do too many things at once. The most successful innovators usually have singularity of purpose. Only geniuses like Da Vinci or Thomas Edison could innovate in a variety of different fields simultaneously.
3. Don’t wait until the innovation is 100 percent perfect. Launching an innovation in its “almost right” format is perfectly acceptable and highly recommendable. This is the only way to test it and find out what other improvements are required. The cost of making it “perfect” may not be justified and may, in fact, kill a good “almost right” opportunity.
4. Don’t innovate for the future. Innovate for the present! Immediate payback fuels continuous improvement and innovation.

So, recognize the role of innovation, learn the process and skills of innovating, and apply these innovative abilities on a regular disciplined basis. Don’t wait for opportunity – look for it and exploit it. It is untrue that opportunity knocks but once – it is constantly knocking. The problem is that most people simply ignore it, or open the door and don’t recognize it!

View a negative experience in your life like you’d look at a photo negative.
A single negative cancreate an unlimited number of positive prints.

– Gerhard Gschwandtner.

Anyone who would like to share their experience or give any feedback on this article, please do so…I would love to hear from you.

KC See

Mike Douglas on Family

I picked up a copy of Newsweek (Sept 17th issue) at the airport and as usual spend the time on the plane from Singapore to Malaysia reading …..and up pops this LOVELY article written by Mike Douglas. Yes Mike Douglas a.k.a Mr. Gordon Gecko from “Wall Street”
I think every father should read this.

Go to http://www.newsweek.com/id/40725

In this article, he talks about his challenges in balancing work and family in his early years. How in his first marriage, his work is his priority and hence missed out on the growing up of his children. His second marriage to Catherine Zeta Jones,25 years his junior gave him a second chance. At 65 he has two young kids ; a 4-year old daugther and a 7-year old son!
THe BIG change for him now is as he said ” My life is centered around my family’s schedule.”
WOW……that’s coming from a million dollar celebrity.
What is most interesting is the advise that his father, the equally well known Kirk Douglas gave him. Mike Douglas wrote; “He pointed toward Catherine and said, “When it’s all over, all you really have is your wife. You can dote on your kids all you want, but they’re going to grow up and leave you someday. Then it will be just the two of you.”

Food for thoughts.