Blog - End your year on a positive note – ideas worth sharing

Neon sign, white on black with quote 'do something great'I recently attended a talk on ‘Unleashing the Huge Power of Small’, given by Paul Dunn, four times TEDx speaker, and currently the chairman of B1G1. B1G1 is a social enterprise and non-profit organisation with a mission to create a world full of giving.

Unlike conventional giving models, B1G1 helps small and medium-sized businesses achieve more social impact by embedding giving activities into their everyday business operations and creating unique giving stories.

Every business transaction – and as a result, the business’ day-to-day activity, can impact lives for as little as just one cent.

Paul is indeed, an inspirational speaker, so I wanted to share some of his giveaway points with you. Firstly the scary stuff:

In the world today, each second there are:

  • 2.6 million emails sent
  • 7684 Tweets made
  • 2673 Skype connections
  • 61,411 Google searches
  • 70,014 You Tube videos watched

So, with this huge information congestion, here are a few things to consider if you want to make an impact and take a positive approach to business. Even if you’re familiar with the thinking he talks about, it can be good to remind yourself and revisit some of these ideas.

How do you engage with your customers?Man and woman shaking hands over a table in a cafe.

To engage with your customers, you must get your message across clearly, at speed, in small quantities (small is fast) and with a purpose.

How do you play a bigger game?

If you choose to play a bigger game, you need to update the quality of questions you are asking yourself. For example, how do we multiply by 10, rather than how do we increase customers by 10%?

Secondly, who can you partner or collaborate with?

To play a bigger game, you must focus on the small.

Understanding the environment you are working in, dictates your performance. Think about the kind of wording you use with those around you and the environment you create, so that people like working with you. These small details cost nothing, but can have a huge impact on your work and business outcomes.

How do you make sure you matter?

Large neon question mark in a small dark roomSeth Godin was much quoted during Paul’s talk. Seth has a great free blog to read if you are looking for inspiration. His comment relevant to having ideas worth sharing is that the challenge is not to be successful, the challenge is to matter. Ideally you want your business to move from being dispensable to being indispensable so that you are irresistible to a specific group.

Simon Sinek, TED speaker on Start with your Why comments that rather than offering something to buy, great companies offer something to buy into. It is important to build beautiful systems that delight, connect and inspire.

The power of any idea is only ever in its implementation.

Implementing your idea is what makes it powerful, so it is important to think about how effectively you communicate. Doing it right, costs you nothing. Doing it wrong could lose you the sale.

Be of service

People respond best to the last thing that they hear, so think about when you might give a prospective client the price of a service or product. And if you want to add value (note, this again costs you nothing) add at the end of your quote, “and includes a number of very special things” – and then outline three special things you could add in such as an after service follow up call, a box of chocolates in the car after servicing, regular reminders about when the next check-up is, or when someone might be close to running out of a product.

All these reminders can be built into an automated system, which needs to be set up, but once in place, can make your customer feel special, and well looked after.

What can you do that costs nothing, but adds a lot?

Quote stating 'People don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it. And what you do simply proves what you believe'. Simon SinekDan Priestley, who is an entrepreneur involved in building the Tesla car, states that “we are standing on a mountain of value, but don’t recognise it. We should be pricing our services by value, not time.”

This is something we all recognise – in most cases when we want someone to complete the service, we appreciate that it might cost us more to hire the person with the most appropriate skills or qualification, but even so, we might go for the cheapest option rather than going for the best value.  In other words, price often wins out.

It’s important that you convince your customers of the value of what it is that you offer.

So, what can you do that costs nothing, but adds a whole lot more to the experience?

How do you create moments of connection?

large metal structure showing rods connecting with each other to form a connected webBuilding an amazing business is about moments of connection. Break every action in your business down into fine systems and processes (Michael Gerber) then look at how you can connect with someone to help complete this process.

For example, in my line of work, I might receive an enquiry from someone being forward thinking and booking a workstation assessment for their staff once they’ve moved into a new office.  At this point I could say “I’ll be happy to do that, plus I’ve also got some tips on how to make life easier when you’re moving offices, so will send you through a link to the relevant page on my website when I send through your booking confirmation. You might just come across something in there that will save you time, money or effort.”

This can create a connected moment with another business person, help them solve a problem and add a lot more to your business.

What is your purpose?

Quote stating 'When your why is big enough, you will find your howBuild a business with purpose – ask yourself “am I going into my business knowing what I do and why I do it?” If you are unsure, watch Simon Sinek’s TED talk (longer version). People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do what you do, and what you believe in!

Give yourself some time to think about this as you plan your new year of business.

The ultimate goal in business is to deal with people who believe what you believe, so your ‘why’ must be to your front and centre. Watch Paul Dunn talk to Simon Sinek about how to do this in this short video conversation.

How great would it be to be able to say “Why we do this work is to make a real impact on the lives of each and every client – we’re certain that that impact will flow over to our community and to our world”.

So what will your approach be for 2018?

If you want to set your business on this pathway, listen to some of the inspiring speakers mentioned above, think about the small things you can change about how you do business that may cost you nothing, but improve your connections with your customers, and create a business which everyone enjoys working with or for, creating a healthy and giving business culture.

That’s a great, positive approach for any of us to try. What’s yours going to be in 2018..?