Ideas@Work! - Strategies for Success

August 1, 2007

In this issue...
Point to Ponder
Capture the Magic of Strategic Leadership
Success Library
Asking for your support for the upcoming Drop Zone Easter Seals fundraiser
Last minute thoughts and ideas
Thanks for reading

Point to Ponder

"If we all did the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves." Thomas Edison

I remember hearing on numerous occasions (as did my often frustrated folks) a phrase something along this line while in high school: "Robert (that's what they called me back then) has such great potential (intelligence, etc) but he is not living up to it."

  • Ever hear something like that about yourself?
  • Ever think that about yourself?
  • Ever thought to yourself, "I can do so much better than I seem to be doing?"
  • Ever realize you are right in thinking that? Ouch.

I had been a 'smart' kid in junior high growing up in California and still displayed some of that when we moved to Edmonton for grade nine.  But, something happened in high school. In high school, I chose to change and to allow myself to coast, to get by, and to do only what I needed to do to ensure I got 'decent - but not great' grades and pass. What changed and why would I share this secret with you?

Looking back with the wisdom of a few years, I can see some of the points that influenced my change. In California they had special advanced classes for those smarter kids where we were exposed to more exciting learning experiences like going into LA to experience an Opera live rather than just listening to music. We were challenged both academically and personally. We were coached to push ourselves to grow, to learn, and to be our best. We were also given respect by our fellow students, as were the jocks. Being smart was a badge of honor of sorts.

When I moved back to Canada there was a perceived difference in the system. Being at the top of your game and class were not as well received; in fact it often earned you scorn and embarrassment from your peers. I was not mature enough to realize this and chose to allow myself to slip academically in an attempt to fit in, to be popular. I sold myself short in an attempt to sell myself to people who (decades later) really did not care or matter in my life. Not anymore! I choose a different path each day now.

A second thing I encountered was a series of teachers for whom teaching was 'just a job,' who did not appear to care about me as a student. My mom was a great teacher and she cared deeply about the success and growth of her students. Sadly, I did not have many like her in my classes. I did have one or two who challenged me; but again, I chose to allow myself to slip in so many of my classes. I have grown to realize that part of my motivation in providing value when I speak, teach or train came from this experience - I choose to enage, to involve, and to challenge those in my audiences to think, to feel, to act.

I graduated, even did really well in a few of my subjects... guess I forgot to slip... and moved on... Time flew and here I am many decades later.

As I look back at the last decade, I am (as Thomas Edison says) astounded at myself. Little things like authoring and crafting 10 books, 5 e-books, two mini book series, CDs, speaking across North America, earning some really decent money in trade for sharing my ideas and building some amazing friendships across the world. I am blessed indeed. And if I can do it, so can you...

What made the difference, I wondered?

  • Something as simple as rediscovering my passion for pushing my performance.
  • Creating some challenging goals and then working like crazy to achieve them.
  • Becoming open to embracing challenges and to learn while overcoming them.
  • Learning to ask for help and finding that people are more willing to help than I was to ask and leveraging that learning for better performance.
  • Allowing people who care and would challenge me to grow into my life. I am blessed in this area and thank God for their investment in my life.
  • Choosing to live my life to make a 'leveraged' difference. 

And you can too!

Stop allowing yourself to slip or coast through life or in your career. You have the potential to astound yourself within you... let it out! Surprise yourself and those who think they 'knew' you with your renewed passion, increased success, and focused purpose for life.

You and I have greatness locked within us... and we posess the secret keys to bringing it to life. We need to unleash the passion and purpose in our lives and move into action. I chose to call my company Ideas At Work! for that reason.

As Dr. Joe Vitale told me when we shared a lunch in San Diego, many people missed that part of what he said in "The Secret" (Movie and book). I saw him standing alone at the back of the ballroom and invited him to join my table. Joe is a very creative and engaging man. Joe's challenge to his movie audience was to act!

He spoke to the convention on Thursday morning and shared a Latin phrase, which loosely translated means: Dare Something Worthy. When we do, we astound ourselves and we move into the creator's category. We need more creators in the world. Join me in creating your own amazing, astounding, and productive future.

© Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey

PS: Bob pictured here with Dr. Joe Vitale (from The Secret) and NSA convention chair and friend, Ian Percy in San Diego, CA.


Capture the Magic of Strategic Leadership

By Linda Maul, CEC

Those lazy, crazy, hazy days of summer provide the opportunity to sit on a patio or verandah and reflect on the first half of the year. In our economy today, reflection is the one skill that has been lost in this accelerated pace we are experiencing, but we all know two key competencies required for strategic leadership are problem solving and decision-making. Without time for reflecting on situations and decisions we aren't being strategic, we're merely holding our head above the water.

Is that how you are feeling today?

Feeling like if you don't continue to tread water at an increasingly faster speed, you will drown? Feeling like the concept of 'reflection time' is a thing of the past, not the future?

Strategic leadership involves the ability to anticipate change and challenges, to consistently maintain flexibility to adapt, to see individual behaviours and actions in terms of how they contribute to the larger vision, and to inspire others to embrace and develop strategic directions to support the organization and the individuals within that organization.

I often hear, 'There's no time to reflect - just do it.', and there are days when we are guilty of the same in our own organization. However, imagine the cost of not doing it, of not taking the time to reflect on past behaviours or future decisions? The cost of making poor decisions, the cost of making the wrong decisions, the cost of losing employees because you've not thought through the consequences of a decision, the cost of not taking a 'progressive', forward thinking approach to planning; all of which require some time to reflect on the decisions ahead.

So, how do you stop long enough to capture the 'magic' of strategic leadership? Here are three effective strategies that work in our business and in others:

 Our solution is to book it in your day-timer as you would any other appointment. Choose your most creative time of day - for me that is early in the day, even before I check emails or return phone messages. An hour at the beginning of a day is the equivalent to three hours later in the day when my mind is distracted and full of other 'stuff'. How often? That depends on your role and the speed at which your organization is moving. In our business an hour on a Monday morning will suffice.

 Allow time to work on your business. We get so caught up in the 'doing' we forget to work 'on the business'. What does that mean? It means taking a strategic look at your business with a view to raising the bar, looking for areas of improvement, considering strategic markets, engaging in succession planning or career development for existing employees, or considering innovative retention strategies. What need is highest in the organization today that requires some 'thinking' time? How will you make that happen? Again we mark this time into our day-timers and in our case it is half a day once a month with all stakeholders in the room. We book the time and as we get close to the date we set the agenda; we don't wait for the 'crisis' to appear.

 Create a culture that encourages taking time to 'reflect' before jumping into important decisions. How do you do that? Create a 'think tank' room where people are encouraged to sit quietly and plan an approach. Model 'reflective or strategic' behaviour yourself. Don't be hesitant to block time, shut your door, use a 'do not disturb' sign for short periods of intense productivity time. Provide employees tools, support and training in problem-solving, decision-making that lead to strategic leadership.

Taking time to reflect will increase your bottom line through more effective decision-making, improved employee satisfaction due to increased confidence in their decision-making and reduced time spent on fixing problems that result from not taking time to reflect on the consequences.

This is an investment in your future. What steps do you need to take today to change the culture of your organization? What do you currently do that works? We would love to hear your strategies.

© 2007 Linda Maul, All rights reserved. Used with the kind permission of the author who is one of my favorite people.

Linda Maul, the Blue Collar Chick, works with organizations who intend to become ‘employers of choice.’ She delivers seminars, workshops and coaching for leaders in very industrial settings. If they wear hard hats, boots and jeans, she’s interested. To book Linda for coaching, workshops, seminars or keynotes call 1.877.693.7644 or email Visit her website for more information:

Thomas Edison and Henry Ford were long time friends, partners and cheerleaders for each other. Each had places in Ft. Meyers, Florida (back to back) where they would retire from time to time to think, to re-think, and challenge each other to return to create even greater accomplishements. Linda does that for me.


Success Library

Each month I have the privilege of suggesting a few volumes for your personal/professional growth and your ongoing success.

I've had a few people ask why I include this piece in my ezine. Simple, I want you to read something that can help you succeed in life, in sales, in your career.

Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, "Many times the reading of a book has made the future of a man (or woman)." I agree!

Here are a few I just purchased from my friend Charlie Tremendous Jones. As Charlie often says, "You are today what you'll be five years from now; except for the people you meet and the books you read."

  • Success with People by Cavett Robert
  • The Wisdom of Andrew Carnegie by Napoleon Hill
  • The One Minute Entrepreneur by Ken Blanchard and Don Hutson
  • The Success System that never Fails by W. Clement Stone
  • You Can by George Matthew Adams

These are part of my summer reading... I brought 10 back with me and I have a whole stack more coming from my order in San Diego. I love the wisdom captured by wise writers and seek to access it and apply it in my life. So can you. Visit to order some of these for your collection. Tell Charlie I sent you.

PS: Bob pictured here with long time hero and more recent friend, Charlie 'Tremendous' Jones at the recent NSA convention in San Diego, California. Charlie is an advocate, a champion of challenging people to read. I grew to love reading at a very young age (4 or 5). I embraced his challenge for career and business reading too many years ago to remember. Thanks Charlie.


Asking for your support for the upcoming Drop Zone Easter Seals fundraiser

Last month I mentioned I had signed up to raise money for this very worthy project. I am asking for your help.

Personal note: I had the privilege of meeting Helice 'The Spark' Bridges, the originator of the little ribbons that proclaim 'Who I Am Makes A Difference." in San Diego. You may have read her story in "Chicken Soup for The Soul." This delightful lady personally blessed me with a ribbon. She also gave me two more to share with those I think make a difference. Visit her website: for more information. I am sharing mine with you across the internet. You can share one electronically here.

I believe our readers, each of you, do make a difference. I am asking for your help in making a 'leveraged' difference in the lives of Easter Seal Kids.

Here is how it works: Anyone who raises a minimum pledge of $1500 for the Alberta Easter Seals Drops Zone before Sept. 10th will get the chance to rappel down the side of the 26-story Sutton Place Hotel (10235 101 St in Edmonton). Since 2005, more than 600 superheros joined this exclusive Superhero Club for Easter Seals. I am committed to being a part of that group this year and want your involvement in making that a reality. I could donate the $1500 for the chance to walk down the building, but that would defeat the process of engaging and involving a great number of people in the process. People like you...

Last year (Edmonton's first) 39 people rappeled down and this year they have a goal of doubling that number. I would like to be one of them with your help. I'm scheduled to step off at 10:45AM on Sept 10th... with your help I will be able to take this small step on your behalf.

I've set my goal to raise at least $2500 and would love your support to reach and surpass this worthy, yet lofty goal. Check out this flash movie to see what I have to look forward to (gulp!) and follow the link below to go to my personal donation page.

Check out my personal donation page and help me in support of this very great cause. 

I've uploaded a pledge form to use if you'd like to download one and get your friends and coworkers to sponsor as well. Use it or direct them to the personal donation page. This is a secure site for making a donation. If you are uncomfortable making an online donation you can mail me a check (payable to Alberta Easter Seals.) I'll include it with my pledges prior to my training.

So, if you've ever been tempted to tell 'me' to take a hike, or a long walk off a tall building... here is a chance to put your money where your mouth is...

I would really appreciate your partnership in this adventure!


Last minute thoughts and ideas

July was joyous

  • Launched Secret Selling Tips internet based program for several new US based clients.
  • Spoke in Waukesha, WI with a group of furniture sales people and held a separate session with their sales and store managers.
  • Attended the NSA convention in San Diego and got recharged with hugs and caught up with my NSA and CAPS family and friends.
  • Went sailing in Seattle and attended a Shackelton's first cousin's reunion.
  • Visited with several speaker friends over the next week on a leisurely trip home.
  • As well as, some camping and relaxing in Golden and Radium, BC and white water rafting in Canmore, Alberta.
  • Actually relaxing on my deck at home. All in all... a pretty good month.  

August will be awesome

Going to stay around home most of this month. It will be a time to relax, reflect, and refocus my work, life, and business activities. A time too, to spend with friends and family. Tweaks on our various websites, new copy, new articles, adding more video clips; learning how to create new audio clips (podcasts) from my recordings; some new websites (Secret Leadership Tips) to build; a possible co-authorship project with Patricia Ogilvy; research some new writing ideas; reading some of the exciting books I ordered in San Diego; and of course creating time to coach and consult with the three CAPS members who purchased a half day with me. Launching one or two additional clients on the Secret Selling Tips program.

A nice balance of enjoying my place in the country while creating new business for the next year. Summer is a time to reflect and refocus... a time to work on the business.

Am thinking of pulling together a simple, kick butt, workshop for my fellow speakers in Alberta (perhaps one in Calgary and one in Edmonton) where we can meet and chat about our speaking business as a creative 'study' group. After all, just because we may not be speaking as much during the summer does not mean we should neglect this time to work on the business. Will send out an email this week and see who might be interested in each city. Have two speakers in Calgary who have purchased coaching time with me from the joint auction (wow... they paid $625 for the half day) so, might be able to work it around a trip down before I head to Mexico.

August 18-26: Practicing what I preach in taking time away to reflect and recharge in Puerto  Vallarta. Going to take the older laptop along to do a little writing each morning. Have a couple of writing projects I would love to get finished including the new Pocket Wisdom - Secret Leadership Tips and Pocket Wisdom - Secret 'Service' Tips. Going to take a couple of my new books from Charlie and a bunch of fun novels to read on the beach. Maybe do some sailing or seado-ing.


Sept. 8-9th: Strategic planning session with the staff and board for the Community Futures Peace Region.

Sept 10th: with your help, walking down the outside of a 26 story building in Edmonton.

PS: Bob at the helm of 'The Obsession' (a 70 foot custom 1986 Sparksman/Stephens sloop) out of Seattle. I think I like this... think I need to schedule more time to do this....hmmm Anyone want to joint me for a 'short, 3 hour cruise?'


Thanks for reading

Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey would be pleased to be a part of your success team and to work with you for your conference, meeting or training event. For more information about customized keynotes, professional/personal leadership training and coaching, seminars/retreats, please visit or call our Creative Office at: (780) 736-0009

Ask about a customized conference, coaching or training package to suit your specific career, company, or organizational needs.

PS: Pic is 'jet pilot wannabe' Bob on the deck of the USS Midway in the San Diego harbour. Stayed over an extra day to play tourist and one of my adventures was to revisit history with a tour of the Midway.


If you are new to our Ideas At Work! family, welcome aboard. If you've been with us a while, I hope you'll enjoy our new expanded format. We publish this e-zine to share ideas and keep in touch with our friends, readers and audience members who wanted to remain in contact and share in the lessons we acquire along the way.

You are receiving this e-zine because someone (we hope you) subscribed. If you want to continue getting this on a monthly basis, simply do nothing. If you decide you do not want to receive this publication, at any time, simply hit the unsubscribe button to the right. Please pass this issue along to anyone you think will gain some benefit from reading it.

If you have gotten this copy as a forward from one of your friends and want a copy of your own, simply hit the subscribe button to the right and give us your email address. Our service - Mymailout automatically does the rest.

Follow link for Privacy, Copyright and Polices


Subscribe | Unsubscribe | Send this to a friend

This email was created and delivered using MyMailout
"create, send and manage email newsletters"

Send this to a friend

Subscribe | Unsubscribe

Professional speaker and business success author

Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey is a long time leader and professional member of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers as well as the International Federation for Professional Speakers.

He is proud to be an active professional member of these amazing groups of people dedicated to polishing their craft and to better serving their clients and audiences.

Bob is the co-founder and past president of CAPS Vancouver, an honorary founding member of CAPS Sask., an honorary member of CAPS Halifax and as well as being an active member of CAPS Edmonton and a frequent supporter of CAPS Calgary. He served as a CAPS National Director (2000-2002.)

He would be happy to discuss how he can work with you to equip and motivate your leaders, their teams, sales teams or volunteers to grow and to succeed.

Call him today at 1-780-736-0009 to explore leveraging his innovative Ideas At Work with your organization. Or, email him at


Secret Selling Tips

  • If your success depends on your ability to persuade or sell your ideas
  • If your chosen career is selling or retail
  • If you lead or manage a team of selling professionals
  • If your business depends on sales to grow
  • If you haven't already visited this new online venture, I'd invite you to do so and to tell your friends and colleagues.

For, as little as, the price of a cup of coffee you can equip and motivate yourself or your sales team to grow and succeed.

Visit our site:

Secret Selling Tips will soon available for individual subscriptions. At present it is available only to companies for their entire sales teams.

Secret Leadership Tips will be available for subscription later in 2007. It will be available for individual subscriptions and will feature MP3 recordings from time to time.

Pocket Wisdom - Secret Leadership Tips publication will be available in September.

Pocket Wisdom - Secret 'Service' Tips publication will be available in October


Alberta Speakers Ad-venture

Earlier this year Bob pulled together a team of 20 Alberta Speakers as a joint marketing ad-venture team. They've done co-op advertising in several publications and marketing on the web with some good results. Visit their site:

He is planning a similar ad-venture for and in the fall.


Sunshine Seminars

I've been thinking about setting up some Sunshine Seminars and wanted your insights. What I was considering was holding them in a warmer place during the winter months and a fun place during the summer ones. For example: Mexico, Hawaii, San Diego or Phoenix.  Topics would be around expanding your career and business and/or sales, and/or becoming a more powerful presenter.

I was planning on being able to use the time prior or after the seminars to do writing for this publication and others we do each year. Who knows, perhaps we can arrange for some sailing 'success team' discussion groups. Smile

What do you think? Would that be something of interest to you? If so, drop me an email with your thoughts:


Quantum Success Series

Recently in San Diego, Bob met with some of the CAPS and NSA co-authors of this e-series to raise awareness for Huntington's disease and support for They wanted him to remind you it is still available as a complimentary download at:

Please pass along our invitation to download a complimentary copy to your friends, coworkers, professional colleagues and family. 85 top North American authors have contributed their wisdom in the creation of this special three volume e-success series.


#10, Creativity Corner
Egremont, AB T0A 0Z0