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Ideas@Work! - Strategies for Success

November 29, 2005

In this issue...
Point to Ponder
Welcome to our 'dedicated' December Issue
Make this a very 'special' Christmas season
Suggested reading - add to your success library
Last minute notes and thoughts
Thanks for reading this issue...

Point to Ponder

The Greatest Gift!

December is a month of hectic activity. For North American retailers, it is traditionally a month that can make the difference in their fiscal year. For the rest of us in business it can be very busy as well. It will be for me... as I write this, I am in Halifax for the 1st of three presentations.

Not everyone celebrates Christmas, but most of us at least pause to reflect on 'gifts' during this tremendously commercial part of the year.

I'd like to challenge each of you to consider the greatest gift of all.

Danny Thomas once said, "Success in life has nothing to do with what you gain in life or accomplish for yourself. It's about what you do for others." Wise words from a very successful entertainer, investor and community supporter.

Wise words for those of us in business as well. Isn't  'giving' the essence of what makes the successful business grow?

What is the greatest gift you may be thinking? Well, I believe the greatest gift we can give is our appreciation and recognition that we care.

  • Have you told your family that you appreciate their contributions and support over the past year? Their gifts of love and support.
  • Have you told your friends and colleagues the same thing?
  • How about your staff who have worked with you this year to build or work through the challenges together? Their gifts of diligence, support and value-added contributions.
  • How about your suppliers who helped you and were consistent in making sure you had what you needed to serve your clients? Their gifts of service and support for your efforts.
  • How about the most important people in your business life - your customers? Have you let them know how much you appreciate the gift of their trust in doing business with you lately?

My challenge for each of you this month is to take a moment and reflect on the people who have given you the gift of their friendship, love and support and then find some way to let them know.

My personal gift to each of my Ideas@Work ! subscribers is an advance copy of my newest e-book "Legacy of Leadership!" We just purchased some new e-book publishing software and will be finishing this new publication in a new format before the year end.

We're still tweaking it, but I wanted you to have it as my token of appreciation for sharing my ideas and thoughts each month. Simply email me at: and I will send it along to you by Christmas (or early in 2006 depending on software learning curve.) I'll be travelling for the first part of December (Halifax and Ottawa), but will be back in the office by the second week and will work on finishing it then.

All the best for this Christmas season. See you in January, 2006. 

Why not send this ezine along to a friend or colleague - we hope it will be a gift of knowledge, encouragement and enjoyment to all who receive it.


Welcome to our 'dedicated' December Issue

          "All that we send into the lives of others comes back into our own"  Edwin Markham

I've always enjoyed the Christmas season... more so when I was a kid... that excitment was rekindled when I saw the joy in my grandchildren's eyes. I wish each of you a most joyous Christmas season... but let's not forget the non-commercial reason for the season.  Many around the world celebrate a gift that was given in the life of Jesus, as I happen to believe. Whether you believe that or not, let's celebrate 'our life' by making it a gift to others in our personal and professional involvements. You can and do make a difference, even if you are not aware of it!

Let's dedicate this month to the true spirit of giving in our relationships, our businesses and our leadership.

Welcome to this December issue of Ideas@Work ! - Strategies for Success

If you are new to our Ideas At Work! family, welcome aboard. You can jump ahead to the articles if you have already read this introductory note.

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.

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Make this a very 'special' Christmas season

Encouraging Your Employees


by Chris Widener

"I have never seen a person who could do real work except under the stimulus of encouragement and enthusiasm and the approval of the people for whom he is working." Charles M. Schwab

One of the most important things you can do to help your business or venture succeed is to encourage your employees. I know that for many the tendency is to think that an employee should be encouraged by their paycheck (and they should), but employees are people, and people need encouragement.

Here are some ways to help you encourage your employees.

Tell them that you appreciate them. For many, this is all they need. A simple "You know, I really appreciate the hard work and determination you put into this job," is enough to encourage them and get them on the road again.

Give them some time off. Have you ever considered just saying, "You know, you do such a great job, I want you to take an extra day off this week. Make it a three day weekend."

Buy them a gift. A good way to do this is to be aware of what hobbies and interests your employees have. Then when you are out and about and see something that has to do with that particular interest, pick it up for them. Coming into the office and saying "Hey, you know, I really appreciate what you do for the company, and I got this for you as a small token of my appreciation," will do wonders!

Be sure to say "Thanks." No matter what, always be sure to say thank you to those who work for you. Yes they do it for a paycheck, but it always helps to know that their work is recognized.

And as for recognition, a great way to encourage your employees is to recognize them in front of their peers. Stand them up and praise them before their co-workers. And watch their faces light up, their countenances change, and their work get better!


About the Author:

Chris Widener is a popular speaker and writer as well as the President of Made for Success and Extraordinary Leaders, two companies helping individuals and organizations turn their potential into performance, succeed in every area of their lives and achieve their dreams. Join subscribers in over 100 countries around the world! Get Chris' FREE weekly Made for Success Ezine by sending a blank email to Visit his websites at and Copyright 2002-2005 Made for Success. Used by permission of the author. All rights reserved worldwide.


Suggested reading - add to your success library

As some of you who know me personally are aware, I tend to read a fair number of books in any given month. Some of you send them along and I even have clients giving them to me. One of my clients just gave me a copy of 'Winning At Retail.' I'll report on that later, but it is a very good read. Part of my reading activity is my own thirst for knowledge; ideas, techniques and tips I can use in my own career and companies; but also information I can share with my readers, clients and audiences.

I've decided to pick three great reads each month, from my growing pile of books looking for shelf space, as my suggestion for your personal and professional success library. I invite you to check them out and add them to your Christmas reading. Perhaps you might purchase some of them for your friends, staff or colleagues, too.

I'd hope you might consider some of mine, but am delighted to pass on recommendations of authors, (some who I've met or worked with) who are teaching and challenging me.  You can also check out our growing collection of wisdom and writing. (new articles go up from North American experts each month).

Leaders are readers! Taking personal leadership in your career, community or company will be enhanced by selective, strategic reading... followed by seeing  those Ideas At Work! in your life, leadership or companies.


Put the Moose on the Table by Randall and Todd Tobias

Developing the Leaders Around You by John C. Maxwell

Powerful Conversations by Phil Harkins

And if you have suggestions for your fellow Ideas@Work! readers please pass them on to me.

Just adding this from Halifax. My friend Daniel Saintjames just sent this to me. Check it out.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to go back and change something? What would you do?  James Green, in his new book, "If I Only Knew Then What I Know Now" explores this question. He has collected some gentle, yet powerful stories from many people who talk about how to get it 'right' and how to create a life without regrets.

He has also put together a package of amazing bonus gifts for anyone who buys a copy of this book on Wed. Nov 27th. And it is only $13.57. So check it out.

Please go to: and check it out. Or paste this link into your browser for more details.



Last minute notes and thoughts

On the road again: This month has been crazy, but I love it! :=)

Welcome to some of our newest subscribers from the CIM Leadership Development workshop and the ASCHA conference. I am humbled by your kind words and response to my session on how to motivate and apply some key strategies to accelerate your employee's success (CIM) and keynote Rising Above the Storm (ASCHA).

My thanks to Captain Irene Martin and her amazing crew at the Alberta Senior Citizens Housing Association for inviting me to share a few ideas (built on my little sailing through a typhoon adventure) with her delgates on Nov. 23rd. (Their Theme was Managing the Changing Winds and they created a real sailing experience.) It was great to be speaking at the same event as my long time friend, mentor and cheerleader Peter Legge, who has been so inspirational in my development in this industry. He was truly awesome and again I learned points I can use to further hone my skills.

Earlier this month, I spent the weekend with 250 'groovy' Toastmasters in District 60 in London, ON. (Their theme was Finding Your Groove) District Governor John Rich, DTM invited me to come and have fun, and I did. What a great group of people! Toastmasters are great around the world, it's like visiting family.  Many of them are also joining our Ideas@Work! family for this issue. Welcome aboard and thanks for making my visit so special. I look forward to hearing from you as you build your bridges of communication, compassion and commerce.

I'm sending this December issue 'direct' from Halifax, NS where I am  working with the CAPS Halifax Chapter for 3 days. Isn't technology great when you can leverage it! I've had the pleasure of sharing a few ideas (8 building blocks) on how to successfully build their speaking businesses at their special Chapter meeting last night (Monday Nov 28th). On Tuesday (today) we are conducting an interactive workshop (Quantum Leap - the 4th in a series they have been conducting all year) to help take their promotion, authorship and product development to the next level; and on Wed (tomorrow) will be doing one-on-one and group coaching.

Tomorrow evening (Wed. Nov 30th), I will have the special pleasure of sharing a few ideas with Toastmasters from the Halifax area. One of our CAPS members is also a TM and has kindly invited me to do so. Ron has gone the distance in setting up this special educational meeting. Thank you Ron!

Ron picked me up at the airport when I flew in Sunday nite... he says he has close to 100 people coming. Wow! Now that is amazing. One of his emails went out with a tag line: "Only 7 days until Hooey."  I've become an 'event'... lol  A humbling thought... but a great opportunity to give back to this wonderful organization that has given me so much.

If you are a TM or know someone in the Halifax area, have them contact Ron Corkey, ATM-S at: immediately for more information, or just come on down! This special one-of-a-kind educational meeting starts at 7PM  at the Oakwood Terrace Seniors Complex, Woodside. (between Dartmouth General Hospital and the Fire Hall). There is no charge for attending this educational meeting.

Thursday Dec 1st, some of us will  fly into Ottawa for our annual CAPS conference. (Actually about 350 from across Canada, the US and other countries.)

What makes this one fun for me is we are launching the 1st Annual CAPS Luggage Olympics. If you are a road warrior and travel for work, you'll understand the 'fun' of juggling a phone, coffee, roll-it bag, garment bag and perhaps a coat through a crowded airport. We will have an obstacle course set up and people will be able to do time trials. The top two finalists will face off on Sat for the medals - Gold and Silver, as well as special prizes. It should be a hoot.

December 8th I will have the priviledge of addressing recent graduates from an emerging leadership program at the UofA, School of Business in Edmonton.

Watch for news of a new E-anthology that I have the priviledge of creating. "Quantum Success - Giving your leadership, career or business a quantum leap" (working title) will feature a collection of wisdom from some of North America's top experts. Response from some of the experts contacted has been humbling, as so many said, "Hooey, I'm in..." Proceeds for this new venture will be going to Laura's Hope, to help further fight Huntington's.

Having a challenge recruiting volunteers for fundraisers & events?

I've made mention to the Skoochie on-line service in past issues...  but they now have a new service. Skoochie helps you recruit volunteers for fr*ee.  Visit: and try it out for yourself. Feel free to use the regular service too... and use my sponsorship key. Look under the list of sponsors so you can use the service at no charge.


Thanks for reading this issue...

Thank you for reading this issue of 'Ideas@Work! - Strategies for Success'. We know your time is valuable and our commitment is to make sure each issue has some solid value for you and your team.

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 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.

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