Sittin In My Room…

23 01 2014

Got an INSPIRATION!

Sittin in my room got an inspiration

No one ever did it.  Its an innovation

How we gonna do it? Thats implementation.

Tellin you about it thats my motivation!

 

365 plus makin it real

Once a week wrtiting all about the deal

Never hit my mojo couldn’t get the feel

Started with a temper took the time to heal.

 

Then it popped off

Not a knock off

Blow the roof off

Time to show off

Its a stand off

Or a face off

Not a Madeoff

Wasnt paid off

 

But I know that when I speak or take it slow

I get lost, it aint me…you would never know

If I dont bring it strong the chance would blow

 

So Yo go!

Get your Mo Jo!

Let the words flow

From the front row!

 

Woah!

 

Sittin in my room got an inspiration

No one ever did it.  Its an innovation

How we gonna do it? Thats implementation

Tellin you about it thats my motivation!

 

EYE CUBED





Never Let Them See You Sweat!

5 11 2013

I had ridden Rhythm, a 14 year old majestic Morgan horse, a few times before this recent visit to the barn.  Though today was going to be different. I was on my own.  For the first time, my riding instructor was not by my side.  I was confident.  As I lead Rhythm from the barn and to the riding arena I believed Rhythm and I were in sync.  It was going to be a great ride.

Sessel and Rhythm

 As I entered the ring, I glanced over my shoulder and noticed the only noise was of the wind rustling the colorful Fall leaves.  I prepared to step into the stirrups and sit in the saddle.  I took one more look around.  I was truly on my own.  Thoughts flashed through my head.  Is it smart to be riding alone?  Can I really handle this horse?  I mounted the saddle and settled in.  Now, I was nervous.  As I moved the reins into position, I thought this may not be such a great idea.  Just one guy sitting on top of a thousand pound horse ready to run!  I felt a bead of perspiration role down my brow. My hands shook.  As I eased Rhythm into a walk, his head shot up with excitement.  Was he nervous too?  Clearly this wasn’t going to be a nice walk around the ring that I had envisioned.

Rhythm sensed I was nervous, and he became jittery too.  We were heading towards the fence.  I had to pull him into a quick turn to keep us from hitting the fence.  I was breathing faster, and we tried again.  I knew I needed to calm down, however I couldn’t summon the “calm” I needed.  Once more Rhythm fought to run, then side to side he strained against my lead.  Rhythm stopped and I dismounted.  No way was this safe.  Defeated I took Rhythm back to the barn.

During my drive home, I reflected on my failed ride.   When I was calm, Rhythm was calm.  When I got nervous,  Rhythm got nervous.  Clearly I needed to pull my nerves under control.   Rhythm was sure that a nervous rider was on board.  And following my lead like all great horses do, he became nervous and tense himself.  As I turned into my garage, I realized this lesson in leadership applied to all that I do.

Just like our majestic horse, Rhythm, the great people I lead respond to my every emotion.  A leader has to be cool under pressure, calm during a crises, and energized to succeed against all forces all the time.  Your team will derive it’s strength from your demeanor, energy and enthusiasm for your strategic mission. You must control your nerves and emotions.  If you portray panic and fear, then they will wither like their leader and spread the negativity throughout the team.  So, to keep your team inspired and driving towards success, never let them see you sweat!

Tips for keeping calm in the storm:

  1. Daily am exercise!  Sound body, sound mind.
  2. Leave your home life at home.
  3. Play your favorite “pump up” tune during the last 5 minutes of your commute.
  4. Before you walk in the office tell yourself, “It’s show time baby!”
  5. Greet everyone with a smile and a vibrant “Good morning!”
  6. While at work, find a quiet place to regain composure if the pressure is mounting and refer to #4.

Let me know how it goes.

This Post was written by Mark Sessel, President/CEO of PFP





When You Speak Of INSPIRATION, What Language Do You Use?

15 10 2013

In a recent post, we posed that nothing happens without the determination to TAKE IT TO THE LIMIT when implementing goals.  Prior to setting plans in motion however, the first “I” in the Eye-Cubed formula—INSPIRATION must have been felt.  Let us be sure, before we move forward, that we are speaking the same language when referring to the INSPIRATION needed to thrive in today’s corporate environment.

We do not need a “Yeah! Rah! Rah!” motivational presentation where audiences are left with a positive shot in the arm and a motivational kick in the butt.   The inspiration residing within an Eye Cubed leadership team neither leads folks to walk on fire nor climb over mountains. That is definitely not what I’m talking about.   We need the down’n dirty Eye Cubed INSPIRATION that identifies a need, recognizes a problem or uncovers an awareness of a pivotal situation that gives a person an idea about how to fill a need, solve a problem or choose the right path.

Sledgehammer-Window-300-707643

Let us look at several examples about inspirational breakthroughs that have changed the way we think, shop and ship.

Steven Jobs and Michael Wozniak.  APPLE.   Today we can’t leave home without our phone and calling folks is one of the least popular things to do with it!   Think of the impact “i” life has had on your world in general, both positively and negaitively and specifically on many industries (tv, printed communication, shopping, photography).  Apple’s inspirational revolution required companies to Inspire, Innovate and Implement—or go out of business!

Sam Walton.  WALMART.   Here is discount shopping at the ultimate.  Sam Walton identified a market that was poorly serviced by Catalogue Shopping.  On-sight customers traveled to large city department stores for their “brick and mortar” experiences.  His inspiration brought discount stores to rural America.   His underlying philosophy of honoring the customer and his employees dominated Walmart’s culture and brand.   Now WALMART dominates our cities large and small.

Fred Smith.   FED-EX.  Based on his inspirational desire to bring over-night delivery systems that took advantage of technology, Smith wrote a paper/proposal on the subject while studying at Yale University.   It was quickly disregarded as an innovation lacking viability.  His experience and insight while in the military gave him the inspiration needed to pursue his dream.  Today, “Fed-Ex” is a verb; a word that universally means “overnight delivery”.

My very own company, PFP, took a life insurance distribution method and turned it into a hugely successful marketing process which, by far, spawned the leading provider of voluntary insurance products purchased by credit union members throughout the country.   The insurance industry’s revolution required INSPIRATION at its core when PFP founders identified the problem and came up with a viable solution.  With the goal of expanding critically needed insurance protection within an underserved market, PFP created a unique distribution approach and service model.   Upon reflection, the Eye Cubed INSPIRATIONAL process was clearly exemplified as part of PFP’s history.  It took inspired leadership, innovative products and relentless implementation to ultimately give rise to a great company.

post-it-note_ideas-inspiring-innovation

Eye Cubed companies possess the inspiration needed to evolve and Eye Cubed leaders are inspired to turn challenging opportunities into market dominance.  What factors are facing your business, industry or niche that requires inspiration powerful enough to spur the innovation that must be implemented today?





MARKET WATCH! The Best Investment Tip Available Today!

7 08 2013

Invest Short Term and Long Term In The Company of U!

Investment Tip

With all the external pressures grabbing at our time, it is never surprising that we neglect to invest time in ourselves.   I am not referring to meaningless ‘time’ that ultimately will be considered wasted.  I am specifically referring to intentionally maximizing the time you have to grow your most important asset, the asset you are 100% responsible for, The Company of U!

In the same fashion that we approach the challenges facing our industries and business, we need to relentlessly pursue personal change to overcome the struggles, challenges and issues specific to our own progress.   The commitment to The Company of U will reap the highest return.

  • Keep Investing in R&D

Never Stop Learning.  Challenge yourself with new courses and new skills.   Go out of the box.

  • Live Your Brand

Be true to yourself.   Live up to the reputation you have given yourself and do so throughout your day, every day.   Hold yourself accountable and recognize when you need to refocus and adjust.

  • Analyze Your Streams of Income

Manage your finances carefully and continually ask yourself:   “Am I satisfied with my balance sheet?”   Review revenue streams and expenses to keep The Company of U on solid ground.

  • Keep the President of U Healthy

When it comes to health, you can only control the things you can control.   And, the list includes eating, drinking, sleeping, exercising and getting checked-out!  The list might seem overpowering but Healthy Presidents need power.

  • Improve Communication

Miscommunications and misunderstandings cause stress.   Hone your skills.Think about what to say and how to say it to get the results you want.  Take responsibility for your words.

  • Enhance Collaboration

You can exponentially increase the value of The Company of U by developing a strong, dedicated team.  Create a positive environment to foster this synergy.

  • Plan to be Inspired

Give yourself the time and space to be inspired/  Test a variety of meditation and relaxation methods to free your mind of the ‘must dos’ and tap into your creative energies.

  •  Implement Change to the Company of U

Like every company in operation, you too need to evolve to remain relevant.  It takes many small steps consistently placed to effect change and see the desired results.   Make the journey worth it.

  •  Appreciate Your Past and Understand Where You Came From

You have a history that shaped you into the person you are today.  The Company of U cannot move forward without the past as a foundation upon which to stand and build.   You have accomplished incredible things to get where you are.  There are people in your life who have helped you achieve.   You have overcome obstacles and reached goals.   Never forget that as you break new barriers and push for greatness, you are your biggest asset!

There are many advisors looking to help folks invest their money.   They look for companies that have strong foundations with the greatest likelihood for sustained growth.  The greatest investment strategy that an Eye-Cubed leader can follow is simple.  Invest short term and long term in The Company of U!





Teens Show Us How To Implement

20 06 2013

Today is the last day of the school year.  My sophomore daughter was up last night until 3:30 am completing an iMovie-project on the current state of racism in America.   The topic was challenging, the process so very 2013 and her commitment to the project was in true Eye-Cubed fashion.  She is an Eye-Cubed student with a vision for her assignment (Inspiration), intertwined production concepts with current technology (Innovation) and completed the project on time (Implementation).  By noon today her summer will begin.

Sydney faced this entire school year with the same Eye-Cubed technique.  She is one who super-challenges herself with high expectations.  Now, shouldn’t we all have high expectations for our goals?  Without an ounce of overconfidence, she believed in herself and her mantra of consistent effort.  She was able to see the finish line ten months ahead of her, and take the many steps towards it, one at a time, day after day.  Her vision, her mantra, is inspirational.

I watched her along the way.  And while she willingly (yet sometimes hesitantly) placed herself squarely outside of her comfort zone, she found humor and enjoyment along the way as she made a plan and followed it.  Although extremely difficult, especially for a teenager, Sydney rarely veered from her course and kept her commitment to hard work with consistent effort.  In spite of a challenging journey, she enjoyed the process.

Well before she receives her “grades”, she should know that she has achieved her goal.  The analysis is not in the letter, but rather in the story behind the effort.

Student-Studying

It is a story of:

  • Planning
  • Perseverance
  • Self-Advocacy
  • New Experiences
  • Self- Confidence
  • Managing Frustration
  • Celebrating Personal Victories

This story has meaning for the Eye-Cubed leader of today.  Our careers and organizations present us with many of the same challenges facing our children as they navigate through the educational system.  We have choices to make, paths to follow, challenges to face and skills to learn.  We have disappointments to deal with and victories to celebrate.

What is the Eye-Cubed measurement of success?  Much like the educational system, the focus can be misplaced.  It is not in a title or a superficial “end game”.  Success is measured in effort along the way.  It comes from the ability to work the process to its fullest, and to follow the path consistently through inspiration, innovation and implementation.   It is by no means a destination but rather a journey.

Thank you for the lesson Sydney!  Enjoy the summer.





Leadership As The Cornerstone of Inspiration

19 03 2013

To Lead!  To inspire others!  To motivate others!  To guide others!

Inspire

Without the ability to lead, we would never have an opportunity to inspire and excel as an Eye-Cubed-U graduate.  And as we learned in the post “Leadership, The Prerequisite Of Inspiration”, we strive to achieve the status of “You da man!/wo-man! Leadership”.  Once achieved, we have the ability to inspire others throughout our lives.  The life cycles we move through present the forum to develop ones leadership quotient and build our inspirational platform.  Have you taken advantage of those moments or allowed them to pass by without personal growth and the necessary experience to be the inspirational force to others in your life?

Who to lead/inspire?

  • Friends
  • Classmates
  • Co-workers
  • Spouse
  • Children
  • Employees
  • Community
  • Executives
  • Partners
  • Parents

The potential world in which you inspire grows over time.  Ultimately, when you reach the pinnacle of leadership, you will experience a time period when inspiration and leadership will simultaneously be needed from you to most, if not all, of the groups listed above.  Imagine the day when your inspirational world is complete.  This responsibility can be considered a burden or an honor.  It could be overwhelming or personally “inspiring”.  People either run from it or sprint to it.  Each individual handles this reality differently (possesses different levels of leadership quotient) and as a result, rises to meet varying portions of the inspirational needs of each subset.

Leadership lighthouse

I believe I am there today.  I am at a special point in my life.  And I consider this an honor, a challenge and a responsibility.  While everyone needs inspiration, it can never be accomplished using a cookie-cutter approach.  Like management, coaching and leadership, inspiration is a very personal emotion.  My children are inspired very differently compared to my partners.  The executives working with me in PFP gain their inspirational infusion in a significantly unique way compared to my employees.  And I realize, over the past few years, my parents look towards me for inspiration as well.  They too have special trigger-points that push them, motivate them and ultimately inspire them.  My leadership quotient is at a particular high point in my because I am capable of providing inspiration in a flexible manner based on my targeted group or individual.

I recognize that leadership and athleticism have something in common.  To be truly great, one needs to practice.  To maximize ones potential, one must take full advantage of every opportunity to gain experience, test newfound skills and challenge ones competitive thirst to be the best and “win”.  While the development period is definable, so too is the peak of athleticism and leadership.  There is a beginning, middle and end.

  1. Your children will not always need the same type of inspiration and leadership.
  2. Your community will develop new leaders over time as your position moves from being the active leader to the respected “elder statesman”.
  3. Your organization must execute succession planning and develop a new generation of leaders to inspire others in order to perpetuate corporate greatness.

However, this is not a story of sadness and futility.  It is never time to put oneself out to pasture and wait.  Rather, I propose two reactions.  The first is to “be in the moment” of leadership and truly inspire others when given the opportunity.  If you have the position as inspirational leader, take full advantage.   Second, and most importantly, personally measure and analyze your inspirational world.  Is there a group or sub-group you should be inspiring and leading yet you are not effective in that pursuit today?  Can you add to your world and begin inspiring others?

LeadershipOpportunitiesForGrowth

As of September 5th, 2012, I have decided to do just that.  If I possess the skill and qualification to be inspirational and lead others, my world has broadened to include an ever-widening network on LinkedIn, Twitter and WordPress.  Other social networks will be explored and the inspiration I deliver will spread over the worldwide web in a way I had never imagined.  I will inspire others online as well as face-to-face in presentations, Keynote addresses and all day experiences.  I will not stop broadening my network.

Perhaps the inspiration and leadership lifecycle has lengthened.  Join me on the path.  Inspire me to continue in Eye-Cubed style.  Lead me as I attempt to lead others.





Find Your Inspiration, Spark Your Innovation

5 03 2013

It is lonely at the top

It is frustrating in the middle

It is tiring on the bottom

Urgent_vs_Important

Regardless of where we are in our careers, we are often caught in the challenging cycle of focusing on things that seem “urgent” at the expense of those that are most “important”.  This reality prevents us from being inspired and innovative.  As Eye-Cubed leaders, what separates us from the rest is simple; we rise above the mundane and deliver more.  We get inspired, inspire others and uncover innovation along the way.  We inspire innovation that brings a powerful evolution to our companies allowing for sustained greatness over time.

There are many tasks in our day that are required.  And we must do them well if we plan on growing in our careers and giving our organizations the best chance to thrive.  Weather in the form of enduring meetings, extinguishing fires, performing tasks, managing issues or negotiating politics, we must do more for our teams and companies.

“The urgent items we face each day are like gas, if left unchecked, it will fill all available space, smother everyone and suck the life out of each of us as well as our companies.”

That is why we need to periodically extricate ourselves from this ever-present and required part of our day.  As difficult as it seems, we must create sacred space where we can obtain the upper hand on the work that is surrounding us and bring inspiration to our lives and innovation to our teams.

Here are some suggestions:

Formal Education:

There is nothing like it.  All degrees are worthy in some way of adding value to your life and skills that can be applied to your career.

Read:

Everything that you learn in a class as part of a degree is available to be taught in a book or found online.  You find tremendous sources of inspiration since you can pinpoint topics that interest you.  You do not need to be a voracious reader.  If you are consistent, you will be ahead of the pack.

Get a coach:

This investment is worth every penny.  A coach will help you through the tough times to find strategies that you may not have considered.  A good coach will help you find resources to get you started down a path at any time when needed.  A great coach will challenge you along the way when appropriate.  If you are a top executive and do not have a coach, you are leaving a critical resource on the table.

Form a personal board of directors:

You need a team of folks who you know, like and trust.  Moreover, you need a sounding board of people whose opinions you value.  This is more than a phone call once in a while or a quick story while out to dinner with spouses.  While your personal BOD does not need to meet as a formal group, you need to commit to meetings with each person once a quarter, twice a year or even once a year.  Have an agenda and make the meeting productive.

Join a peer/industry group:

Networking is one of the easiest methods of finding inspiration.  You will see how others work, what is going on in your industry and what the best practices are in your field.  By keeping your eyes open, you will notice that many have similar issues yet few find credible solutions.  If you can find solutions to problems, improvement to process or new concepts to innovate, your inspiration will be awakened.

build-muscle-in-older-man

Finding inspiration and innovation is the cornerstone for you to reach your goals.  It is neither a quick process nor an easy skill to develop.  Yet like any muscle, the time it takes to shape and build must be a priority.  With consistent effort and the commitment to make inspiration and innovation a necessity and part of our lifestyle, each of us can and will excel as Eye-Cubed-Leaders.