Tag Archives: value

Find Your Why to Boost Your Success

Book Cover Find Your Why and question marks

To boost your success, you must find your why. Previously I wrote a blog post about Simon Sinek’s bestselling book Start With Why. This post will discuss his companion book, co-written with David Mead and Peter Docker, called Find Your Why. Simon explains that this book provides the steps to show people exactly how to find their why.

 

Sinek explains it is not what you do that keep you fulfilled, but why you do what you do. Everyone has a why, their deep-seated purpose, a cause or belief, that is the source of your passion and inspiration. Fulfillment comes when what we do connects directly to our why.

Once you understand your why, you will be able to clearly express what makes you fulfilled. Knowing the why helps us set a vision to inspire others and guides us to act with purpose, on purpose.

WHY statements are always:

  • simple
  • clear
  • actionable
  • focused on the effect you will have on others

 

TO ___________ SO THAT ____________.

 

  • The first blank is the contribution you make to the lives of others.
  • The second blank is the impact of your contribution.
  • Your why must be relevant in both your personal and professional life.
  • Your why is a statement of value. It’s who you truly are.

The book advises that you choose a partner (someone who knows you, but not so much that they can finish your stories). Tell them at least five or six meaningful stories from your past. Each story must be a specific time, place, or moment and share it in detail.

Find Your Why suggests two different methods. The first method, “Peaks and Valleys” is where you think of both happy memories and memories you would not want to relive but have shaped who you are today. The second method, “Memory Prompt” is where you answer questions like:

  • Who has helped make you who you are today?
  • What was a pivotal moment in your life?
  • What happened that changed the way you think about your world and your role in it?
  • What have you accomplished in your life that you are really proud of?

Have the person you are telling your stories make notes of the facts in one column and the meaning or feelings in the column next to it. The stories you tell can be those that shed light on who you are at your best as well as specific experiences and people that have shaped who you are today.

Later both of you will look for recurring themes, words, phrases, and ideas. Once you tell stories and identify themes, you are ready to draft your WHY statement. As mentioned, your why statement should read, to _______ so that _________. It should be expressed in affirmative language that resonates with you.

Perhaps, as an innkeeper, your why has to do with serving your guests. It may be about providing them with friendly hospitality and luxurious accommodations that allow them to relax and strengthen their relationships.

Your WHY statement should be something that you agree with completely. It should not be written for your guests, but written for you as a guide to help you make decisions in life. Knowing your WHY statement will provide you with direction and boost your success.

 

Gilchrist and Soames

Gilchrist and Soames offers luxury and eco-friendly bath amenities such as high-quality shampoos, conditioners, soaps, shower gels, and body lotions.  Gilchrist and Soames is based in Indianapolis, Indiana and Peterborough, London, England.

Bee Kind Jet Set Travel Pack

Their popular BeeKind Collection features honey and certified organic extracts of red clover, calendula, lemon grass, and chamomile.  A portion of the net profits from these products supports honey bee and sustainable pollination research. I like their cute travel size BeeKind Jet Set Travel Pack which includes: shampoo, condition, shower gel, body care lotion, and skincare bar that comes with a sleek, custom-designed BeeKind toiletry bag.

Gilchrist and Soames is committed to protecting the environment.  Safeguarding their delicate ecology is deeply rooted in their business philosophy.  They pursue new materials and technologies to make their packaging as recyclable/re-usable as possible.  Their products are never tested on animals.

Gilchrist and Soames supports Clean the World’s Parnership Recycling Program to advance the global hygiene revolution.  Did you know that today in the United States alone we will throw away 1 million bars of soap?

With the donation of your discarded soap and shampoo products to Clean the World, they will be closer to their goal of saving at least one million lives each year.

Donating unused soap as well as plastic bottles:

  • Reduces the spread of illnesses and deaths related to a lack of proper hygiene
  • Reduces waste
  • Minimizes environmental impact
  • Promotes a sustainable future
  • Creates “green” jobs across North America
  • Impacts those suffering domestically and globally

Value to participating hotels and bed and breakfasts:

  • Receive valuable recognition and positive guest perception by working with Clean the World
  • Spread the word with web content, newsletters, articles, and press releases
  • Appeal to the meeting and event planner industry by attracting professionals who are seeking to book with properties adopting sustainability initiatives
  • Reduce waste disposal and recycling fees

Hospitality recycling partners will receive:

  • Clean the World Collection/Shipping bins
  • Transportation of donated items from your property
  • Access to online training materials.
  • A customer service representative for support
  • Quarterly, detailed goods donation reports
  • A framed certificate that can be proudly displayed in the lobby area to inform guests of your bed and breakfast’s participation in their program

Gilchrist and Soames not only has excellent products, but they support green initiatives such as soap and bottle recycling, eco-friendly packaging, and no testing done on animals.  Clean the World is an affordable way to positively impact the environment as well as aid people in need of hygiene products.  See the video below for more information.

Hospitality Partner Program from Clean the World on Vimeo

Note: I receive Amazon Affiliate commissions from purchases made through the Amazon link.

Shatter the Disastrous Myths About Bed and Breakfasts

outdoor pool with picnic basket on umbrella table with a red rose in a vase

It is time to shatter the disastrous myths about bed and breakfasts. There are a handful of reporters recently who have published stories that seem to be more about their own awkward hang-ups than about having real issues with where they stayed. Also, most of their disappointments could have been prevented through simple actions like looking at the accommodations’ website and reading guest reviews before their booking rooms.

Most bed and breakfasts are NOT about staying at grandma’s house with doilies. While some bed and breakfasts are located in historic mansions, that does not mean they have thin walls, squeaky bed frames, and creaky floors. Many of those inns have been painstakingly returned to their original glory with added insulation (if needed), restored or new furniture, and repaired or refinished flooring.

99% of bed and breakfasts offer private, connected bathrooms for their guests to use. Bed and breakfasts with good websites always show pictures of their guest rooms and bathrooms and even specify which amenities come with each of their rooms. Hotels are not the only ones with private balconies, sitting areas, gardens, pools, restaurants, and gift shops. There are plenty of inns offering these same luxuries.

Bed and breakfasts are always unique. Every inn is different and offers its own special personality and experiences. Guests choose bed and breakfasts based on its location, style, local attractions, and personal preferences. Bed and breakfast inns can come in a wide variety of types to choose from, including:

  • scenic mountain bed and breakfasts
  • modern boutique inns
  • bed and breakfast farms
  • pet-friendly inns
  • B&B retreats for authors or artists
  • bed and breakfasts on the water
  • environmentally friendly inns
  • bed and breakfasts in secluded locations
  • kid-friendly inns

There is a reason why they are called bed and breakfasts. Hotels often offer “continental” breakfasts that leave much to be desired. Innkeepers often have culinary training as well as a natural talent and passion for cooking. Many bed and breakfasts accommodate guests on restricted diets.

Preferably while booking your room, be sure to indicate any food allergies or dietary guidelines. Whether you are on a gluten-free, dairy-free, low cholesterol, reduced fat, no sugar added, vegan, or vegetarian diet, bed and breakfast chefs can make something you will enjoy eating that does not compromise those standards.

You do NOT have to have conversations with other guests if you feel like keeping to yourself. There is no “dreaded obligation” to have small talk with strangers. At breakfast time, many inns offer tables for two or even in-room dining. It is less common for there to be one common breakfast table for all the guests to sit at. This is a win-win for shy and outgoing guests as well as perky and not-so-perky guests. You can seek interaction or keep to yourself. It is completely up to you!

Innkeepers want to provide their guests with the best hospitality experience possible. Bed and breakfast staff do not try to “hover” over their guests. They remain attentive (they are there if you need them) yet not intrusive (they give you space and privacy). They respect their guests’ wishes for peace and quiet. Some places offer private entrances, separate cottages or guest houses.

Bed and breakfasts are a great value. They offer free breakfast, free parking, and complimentary refreshments. Most offer free wireless internet and some have free DVD libraries and even provide free streaming video services like Netflix. Hotels charge extra for these things. There is no such thing as “free room service” at hotels.

If you like impersonal and stuffy hotel chains, then maybe bed and breakfast inns are not for you. However, many of you (if you have not already) will visit a bed and breakfast inn and never go back to staying at hotels!

Owners and innkeepers, are you looking to improve your online marketing results?  Want to educate potential guests about what makes your inn more appealing than your local competition? Bed and breakfast blogging offers professional services including blogging, e-mail marketing, social media, and reputation management.  Don’t have time or don’t know where to start? Contact Kristi today for a free consultation!

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

The Tao of Twitter (Part 4)

the tao of twitter

This is the last part of a four-blog-post series highlighting useful information from the hot #1 bestselling book on Twitter: The Tao of Twitter by Mark W. Schaefer.  One of Mark’s essential keys to Twitter success involves providing meaningful content.

His suggestions include:

  • Tweet about what interests you
  • Share what you are reading online
  • Link to your blog or other blogs with rich and relevant content
  • Link to your comments on other social media platforms
  • Leverage your other online content
  • Share something human like what you are grateful for
  • Tweet something non-work related
  • Tweet news related to your business or industry
  • Tweet your opinion on something in the news or something funny
  • Tweet in the moment
  • Tweet at peak times
  • Thoughtfully schedule tweets (Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, or Buffer can help you fan them out throughout the day)
  • Tweet regularly only if you have something of value to share
  • Sharing someone else’s tweet is a form of complimenting them and it puts you on their radar screen: put their content then via @personyouareRTing
  • Keep your tweets as short as possible to make them more shareable
  • Tweet exclusive content before it is released anywhere else
  • Build up the buzz about something before it comes
  • Link to interesting content such as blogs, podcasts, and videos

Schaeffer also discusses the value of using and making Twitter Lists:

  • Click the Me icon, then click Lists and it will show lists subscribed to and lists you are a member of
  • To create a list its name cannot exceed 25 characters
  • Name the list something that makes sense but also grabs people’s attention
  • Click gear icon drop down menu and select Add or remove from lists
  • You do not need to be a follower to a user to add that person to the list
  • You can edit and delete any list you make
  • You cannot add or remove people from your list, you must go to their profile page in order to add or remove them
  • You can follow lists without following individual users in the list
  • Share your lists on Twitter and other platforms
  • Include yourself in the lists with the help of Hootsuite (open your profile in a tweet that mentions you and click to Add to List)
  • Create lists that are helpful to your target audience

Innkeepers, what would be useful information to your target audience: guests who want to stay at your bed and breakfast inn?

  • List of travel organizations and media
  • List of groups providing recipes
  • List of attractions and resources in your particular geographic location
  • etc.

If you are looking for someone to tweet on behalf of your bed and breakfast, we are experienced in helping B&Bs gain more clients.  We invite you to contact Bed and Breakfast Blogging with Kristi Dement for a free consultation.  We provide professional blogging and social media services.

 

Quoting Experts Gets Results

quoting experts gets results

 

Did you know that quoting experts gets results? Those who quote experts show they recognize the key people associated with a specific subject. In Ali Luke’s blog post “26 Essentials for Blogging Success What You Need To Know” she wrote, “When you include quotes from established experts…you add authority, value, and interest to your blog.”

 

People love reading quotes from:

  • Actors
  • Activists
  • Athletes
  • Authors
  • Celebrities
  • Comics
  • Entertainers
  • Experts
  • Leaders
  • Inventors
  • Philanthropists
  • Politicians
  • Role models
  • Speakers
  • etc.

The following success quotes come from a variety of people:

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” (Albert Einstein)

“Each person must live their life as a model for others.” (Rosa Parks)

“In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure.” (Bill Cosby)

“Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.” (Charles Swindoll)

“Nothing is impossible.  The word itself says, ‘I’m possible.'” (Audrey Hepburn)

“The two most important days of your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why.” (Mark Twain)

“Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve.” (Napoleon Hill)

“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” (Wayne Gretzky)

What about you?  Do you have a favorite success quote you would like to share with us?  I respond, when appropriate, to every comment.

 

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

What Makes A Blog Post Go Viral?

what makes blog post viral

 

 

Every blogger dreams of a bigger audience.  It is human nature to want to be recognized and to receive attention and praise.  So just what makes blog post viral?

 

 

1) Have you grabbed their attention with your title?  Opening lines should pique interest and curiosity, show a benefit, highlight a need, promise to entertain/inform/teach, or offer something of value.  Work hard early on at hooking your reader into your post.

2) Have you made it easy to read?  Readers scan pages online looking for keywords, phrases, and visual clues like numbers and bullet points. Use lists or other formatting techniques to emphasize points.  Your content must be appealing, entertaining, engaging, and interactive.

3) Does anybody really care about your topic? No one wants to know what you had for breakfast–unless maybe you had breakfast with a celebrity.  Giving people the “inside scoop” on a famous person’s thoughts and secrets will make your blog incredibly popular.

4) Have you had personal experience involving your blog topic?  Accomplishments speak volumes to your readers.  This does not mean you have to be the CEO of a Fortune 500 company or featured on the cover of People magazine.  What lessons have you learned along the way? People tend to respect you more if you share past obstacles or mistakes and how you overcame them.

5) Is this a brand new topic?  If you are in the fields of medicine, science, or technology you may very well have cutting edge information to share with the world.  We are listening!

6) Is your perspective different and maybe even controversial?  Sometimes blunt opinions can get people in trouble, but they can also get passed along.  Do you have a hot topic that will lure comments?  Be sure to respond to your comments.  This is what makes your blog interactive.

7) Is there something fascinating about your topic or are people sick of reading about it because everybody in the world has been covering it?  There is only so many times people can take hearing about the celebrities that tend to get all the media attention.  It can be annoying when they compare two celebrities who wore the same thing and then make comments on “who wore it better?”  Most people don’t care!

8) Is there something hilarious, quirky, or unbelievable about it?  There is a large dog in my neighborhood who, from behind his fence, will jump up and down like he is on a pogo stick all across his backyard when he sees my dog and I walking together.  I need to get that on video! Speaking of…

9) Do you have a good graphic, photo, or video available?  Humans are very visual creatures. That is part of the reason why Pinterest other image sharing social media sites like Instagram have done so well.  Did you know Pinterest has over 70 millions users?

10) Have you shared your blog post on every relevant social media channel?  You may want to describe the post differently depending upon the platform.  Since Linked In is for business and career-minded people, you may have a different way of promoting your blog post to your Linked In connections than to your Facebook fans and friends.

How will you know if your blog post was successful?

  • Number of unique visitors to your blog post
  • Re-tweets, shared links, social network mentions
  • Quality of the blogs and websites where your blog post is referenced
  • Frequency of approaches by people interested in working with you
  • Quantity of traffic where sales take place
  • Amount of paid opportunities that result from your blog
  • Blog subscriber numbers
  • E-mail sign ups
  • If people who have powerful influence refer to your blog
  • The number and quality of comments from your readers

Trust me, you will know!  Do you have any ideas about what makes a blog post go viral? Please share below.  I read all comments and respond when appropriate.

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography

5 Reasons to Never Give Up!

reasons to never give up

 

 

Sir Winston Churchill once said, “Never give up on something that you can’t go a day without thinking about.” Whatever your dream is, there are at least five reasons to never give up!

 

 

  • You are closer than you think!  Even if you are just getting started, one new idea might really take off.  You never know until you try.  Think how one great idea spurs on several more after that.
  • You never want to wonder “what if?” Live a life of no regrets.  No one knows how much time they have left on earth, so live in the moment and do something now!
  • It is never too late to make a difference.  Everyone has something they can do to positively affect another life.  Even if it is just listening and showing you care.  That could be the best thing you can do for someone.
  • Others will help if you just ask them.  No one achieves anything of value alone.  Have you ever sat in the theater at the end of a movie, to read the credits naming everyone who helped make the movie possible? The right people would love to help you.  They do not know you need their help unless you ask!
  • Believe in yourself!  Everyone is capable of making significant accomplishments.  Remind yourself of what you do well each day.  Positive thinking only!

Think of all the world leaders, explorers, inventors, artists, musicians, athletes, and business leaders that have shaped the world around us for the good.  They never gave up!  Think of the everyday people in your life, who are not famous, but who have made an incredibly positive impact on your life and others around them.  Be the kind of person you want someone to be to you!

 

Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography