Ideas At Work Logo

Ideas@Work! - Strategies for Success

July 5, 2006

In this issue...
Point to Ponder
July can be jumping... if you choose
Do The Right Things; Get The Right Results!
Success Library
New Referral Rewards program
Last minute notes and ideas
Thanks for reading this issue...

Point to Ponder

"Don't ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive." Harold Whitman

This quote was shared by Renee Perrott, Valedictorian, Thorhild Central School, Class of 2006 at a recent graduation ceremony. This quote is passionate and very welcome to my ears! (Thorhild is about 13 km from where I live here in the country, North East of Edmonton, Alberta.)

As I travel across North America, I hear many decrying the youth of today and complaining about their lack of work ethic or ambition. Frankly, I disagree with that short sighted negativity!  More so, when we are in a great position to engage, educate, and empower those who will succeed us and take care of us in our later years.

When I talk with the youth of today, I see the leaders of tomorrow and I am both inspired and encouraged knowing they are thinking different than my generation. Young people like Renee (18), or Fawn (13 -  mentioned last month) or my student friends at the UofL, provide solid evidence that our future will be in good hands. We need to have people of passion in leadership roles; people who are not afraid to take risks, to ask the probing questions, to make the necessary changes, and to move us further along the path.

I am encouraged that they 'are' questioning our changing values and are not afraid to challenge the 'beliefs' of their parents' and grandparents' generations. Strategic challenge is a good thing; if something is valid and true and retains solid value, it will surmount the challenge. The weaker, non-relevant or non-functional beliefs and systems do not deserve to survive. Truth will both survive and gain strength by being challenged.

In my parent's day, it was typical for people to work for only two or three employers in a lifetime. This worked until increased competition and perhaps lack of good management and leadership found many looking for employment in the decade before their retirement. This was a wake up call for their children and their grandchildren, realizing that blind dedication to one job or employer was not always a wise move. Employers are learning this lesson the hard way with an increasingly mobile labour force.

Today, the majority of the emerging workforce is looking for a challenge, a place to grow and to hone their portable skills and talents. They are looking for a better life-work balance and are not as willing to invest excessive amounts of time in unproductive jobs or unfulfilling careers. One of the biggest changes is taking time off between jobs. These job gaps are becoming increasingly less important in seeking employment as both employers and applicants recognize the changing market has impacted this area too. Employers are looking for good solid, creative people who can contribute their energy and expertise. Smart employers are looking for ways to constantly challenge and support them in their quest for growth and value, which might keep them engaged and employed.

I recently read a "2004 study by the Families and Work Institute who polled Generation Y employees and found they were significantly more likely to leave their job than employees who were in their comparable ages in 1977 -- 70 percent, compared with 52 percent." 

Some "sock away money for months or give up expensive apartments" to finance their sabbaticals, but for many, like Taylor Aikin, who left a nice job at an architectural firm so he could spend a month biking across the country, the time is right. "Why now when I'm 28?" he says. "Retirement is too far away. And I was too broke in college." I hear you!

Amazingly enough, this change is not limited to this age group, as many people in their 40's and 50's are following similar paths. I made a life style choice to move to the country in Northern Alberta in 2000 following the death of my folks in 1999. I downsized and got rid of the second vehicle to allow myself more time for the people and activities I value and enjoy. I am more selective in the clients I engage and serve. The trade off has been worth it. For the most part, I love it; except when I have a 6:30AM! (I'm a good 90 minute drive from the airport.)

There are many stages in life and my personal belief is we need to engage each fully as we travel through them. We need to be open to change both ourselves and how we interact or connect with our families, colleagues, teams and communities. Why not have some fun along the way and make a difference, not just money? Don't get me wrong, earning money is not a bad thing, in itself. I'm not afraid to charge for results. I like the fact I've increased both my perceived and actual value substantially over the last 5 years, as this allows me more freedom in what I do with my non-billable time.

Let me finish with the wise words of 18 year old, Renee Perrott, "Think of what you stand for. What's important to you? What do you truly believe in? As you leave this stage, think not of what you want to achieve, but about the person you want to be and the way you want to be remembered. Let it be something good!"

Amen to that!

Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey


July can be jumping... if you choose

"Our problem with the immediate future will not be the lack of opportunities for the really motivated, but the lack of motivated people ready and able to take advantage of the opportunities." Buck Rogers (former IBM Leader)

Summer is an interesting time of year for those of us who are in business or depend upon our ability to promote or sell our services or products. It tends to be a bit slower and some people use that as an excuse to cruise or coast and wonder why their year is a bit spotty or lackluster in performance. That can be a waste!

I find this true in many areas: for example, many Toastmasters Clubs close for the summer. If learning to become a great speaker is your goal, doesn't it make sense to work on it all year? Toastmasters is a great place to hone your skills. Even our professional speakers' chapter closes for the summer. I wonder if working on your business is a strategic decision or not? I miss getting together and learning from visiting experts who come to share with us. Many of my speaker friends also find the summer a great time to work 'on' their businesses instead of 'in' them.

I find summer is a great time to enjoy the outdoors, do some much needed work outside here in the country, visit with friends, and work on other building or decorating projects left undone during the hectic parts of my year.

I also find this is a great time to do some strategic thinking and revisit my plans and goals for my various business adventures. A great time to catch up on creating new marketing materials, recording clips for the website and podcasts, updating my various websites (creating new ones and adding a merchant capacity), writing ahead on this ezine, completing other writing projects buzzing around in my creative mind (I can take my laptop camping, on the deck or in the car as I visit friends) and getting together with fellow speakers, business owners and professionals to share best practices.

How about you?  Summer provides an opportunity to expand your ability to serve your customers and to enhance and add to your own success skills. Use this time to relax and reflect of course, but use it strategically to add to your professional success and to those you lead.

I wish you all the best of summers. Please make sure it is a productive one as well so your fall will be an amazing and profitable time.


PS: This picture was taken on a jet boat on a river just outside of Grande Prairie a year or so back. I was doing a training session and connected with some friends who created this amazing day on the river, pate and wine included. I caught my plane and flew home later that afternoon. Life is what you make it and opportunities make life more fun.


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. 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.

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.


Do The Right Things; Get The Right Results!

by Jeffrey J. Mayer

Day after day, I hear people tell me about all of the wonderful things they will be doing in the future. They talk, and they talk, and they talk.

But when I ask then how they plan to do these wonderful things, they give me one of those "I can't believe that you're asking me this question" looks. I'm sure the same thing has happened to you at least once in the last month.

Now, there's a big difference between talking and doing, and there's an even bigger difference between daily activities and overall results.

Focus Your Energies

When you focus your energies on your activities, you can accomplish the majority of the things you set out to do, because it's easy to manage activities.

On the other hand, you can't, manage results. Results are an end product, they're the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

Results come after a lot of hard work and effort. And for many of us, favorable results don't come easy; we've got to work at it.

So instead of focusing on results, it's much more important to sit down and identify which activities need to be done, and then go out and do them. And before you know it, you've achieved more than you ever dreamed.

Sweat The Details

Most people hate details. They don't like getting down to the nitty-gritty. They don't like getting down on their hands and knees and getting dirt under their fingernails. They don't want to be bothered. Details just get in the way.

But by focusing on the "details," you can achieve not only the results you want, but you can usually do it in less time, and with less effort.

In today's unforgiving business environment, if you don't take the time to work out the details - before you get started on a project - you'll end up working much harder than you have to. The project's going to take longer to complete, and it will cost more than was originally budgeted.

Be Smarter Than The Next Guy, or Gal

To succeed in today's fast paced world, simply working hard doesn't cut it. You've got to be smarter and more creative than the next guy.

However, it's almost impossible to be creative when you're spending all of your time working, or putting out fires, and very little of your time thinking and planning.

Separate Thinking From Doing

When you're able to separate your "thinking and planning" from your "doing," the "doing" becomes much easier.

In American business, "thinking" isn't considered to be "working." Only when a person's "doing" something, is he or she considered to be working.

It doesn't matter that the task that's being done is busy work, not productive work. At least the person's working!

Do The Things That Are Important

To be successful in today's extremely competitive business environment, you must spend as much time as you can doing the things that are important.

Do the things that will make your company money. Spend as little time as possible doing the things that keep you busy, but hardly productive.


On the wall of my office, I've tacked a small sign that reads "How much money am I making from my present task?" This subtle reminder helps to keep me focused, because it's just too easy to get side tracked.

When I find that I'm doing something that isn't making me any money, I stop doing it and start working on something that will put some money in my pocket.

That's why I find ACT! to be such an enormous productivity-improving tool. By looking at the ACT! task list throughout the day, it's easy to identify which tasks are important. Then you set aside some time, and do them.

© Copyright, 2004, Jeffrey J. Mayer, Succeeding In Business, Inc. Reprint permission granted in part or whole when the following credit appears: "Reprinted with permission from "Jeffrey Mayer's Succeeding In Business Newsletter". Visit the Succeeding in Business website for more information.

Note from Bob: Saddly my NSA colleague Jeffrey passed away on April 27th, 2005. I had gotten to know him at NSA events and he was generous with his articles and his advice. I hope you enjoy this one.  He certainly knew how to value his time and put value in his relationships. Photo is Jeffrey with NSA President Mark Sanborn at the Portland, Oregon Workshop. - one of the last NSA events he attended. His wife is carrying on his work and keeps in touch with us by email from time to time.


Success Library

Each month I share a few titles for your advancement and to add to your success library. I love the summer as it is a time less hectic where I get a chance to read a few books long sitting on my desk as well as a few novels for my pure enjoyment.


As always I am interested in your opinions on my selections. I'd be interested to know what you've been reading lately. Why not drop me an email and let me know.


PS: If you are wondering why I use different links behind my name, etc.. Very simple: I have learned this is an excellent way of getting new websites indexed by Google and other search engines. Try it for yourself. If search engine spiders can't find and read your site, they can't index you and people won't find you and hire you!


New Referral Rewards program

Here is your chance to earn a complimentary shopping spree from the collection of creative writing of Canadian Ideaman, Bob Hooey.

Q: Why are you doing this?

A: "Over the past decade or so, I have been blessed with so many people who have become my fans and champions, advocates if you will. People who like what I do and have been kind enough to pass along my name to prospective clients. I am continually humbled by their confiedence. They've referred me either as a business coach, creative consultant, speaker, writer or speech coach. This is the kind of promotion you can't buy because it comes from satisfied clients, readers, and audience members. I am very appreciative of their efforts on my behalf. They want me to succeed. Wow!"

This word-of-mouth referral success has created a small challenge, in that they do not do this for money; they do it because they have seen some value and feel what I have to offer will benefit those people referred to me. Many of them are in leadership roles and are simply glad to be able to pass on a good resource to their colleagues. I have often given them books (mine and fellow authors) as my way of saying thanks for their confidence and recomendation.

I wanted to make this a process for anyone willing to pass along my name to a potential client. After all, some of the bureaus we use garner good commissions for simply suggesting me to their customers. Why shouldn't my readers and visitors gain the same benefits?  Visit Success Publications to see some of the selections available for this rewards program.

Who knows, this might add a few engagements this fall and allow me to share a few ideas to people I would not have met otherwise. It will certainly allow me to share my appreciation to those who value what I provide and recommend me.

Email me or call me directly to discuss it. 1-888-848-8407 (Toll Free)

Visit our rewards website for more information on this exciting new rewards program. This is a work in progress, so please share your ideas and thoughts as we tweak it.


I've also created a Special (limited time) offer to my fellow CAPS/NSA members: Got the idea from Mark LeBlanc during his session in Calgary last month. Make a referral and earn part or all of your flight to Vancouver for the annual CAPS Conference Dec. 7th- 9th. Good for any speaking or training engagement signed and deposit paid prior to the conference. Email me or call me directly to discuss it. 1-888-848-8407 (Toll Free)


Last minute notes and ideas


June was a productive month. Started off speaking at the annual City of Edmonton sponsored Employee Development Conference and then spent the weekend helping lead a leadership retreat. What great teams in both cases!

Worked on the writing, creative, and staging requirements for a client and friend who was to speak at a leadership meeting in Calgary (rescheduled to August 25th). Lots of fun creating a wallet sized, reminder card and some of the other value-added materials we will give the 60 CEO's and their up-and-coming leaders who will attend the Advantage Board Launch in August. We'll fine tune his presentation next month.

Getting closer to seeing the 'book' off to the printer, as their creative department is working on layouts in addition to their already full plates. What I've seen so far is amazing... too bad this is only an internal publication!

Was able to dig in and revisit the Quantum Success fund raising project so look for more information on that as it comes to fruititon this summer. We have over 40 talented North American authors contributing to this project. Amazing!

The University of BC just announced a break through in fighting Huntington's which will make a big difference in the years to come. Quantum Success is designed to help raise funds Laura's Hope which was created to help fund Huntington's research.

Visited the CAPS Calgary Chapter mid-month for a special full day session led by my friend Mark LeBlanc from California. Mark has a company called Small Business Success and shared some very informative ideas I was able to move on when I returned home. Great to spend time with my fellow CAPS members. Haven't been to the Calgary Chapter as frequently as I used to... that will change (schedule permitting).

Had the opportunity to visit my friend Jamie Hayward's Delta Dawn Toastmasters club on the 29th to share a few ideas about the professional side of speaking. What a great way to finish off the Toastmaster year and the month of June.  Great group of people!


July is less structured, which can be nice. Lots to work on though: Finish the redesign and decore in main office as well as converting of one of my spare rooms into a writing room (almost done - finish this week); lots of outside projects; decluttering (annual challenge); perhaps some camping or playing tourist; a friend's wedding on Friday the 7th; and lots of strategic work, writing, and updating websites. It will be a fun month.


Am heading out to the coast for a visit the first week, perhaps a couple of days camping enroute. My friend Doug Stevenson is doing his amazing Story Theatre workshop in Vancouver, BC on August 2nd, so I plan on investing a day to learn how to be more effective in telling my stories and enhancing my presentations. He gave my presentation a real boost in less than 10 minutes during an NSA event in Hawaii a few years back. It was dramatically better to everyone who watched the progression. I was humbled but better!

PS: This picture was taken on a white water river near Banff two years back. I had spoken and Emceed for a Edmonton city-wide Christian Singles Christmas banquet, when someone mentioned they were organizing this event. I arranged to meet them on my way back from the coast that summer and was able to do my first shot at white water rafting. Something on my list of things I would love to do... again!  I'm the one eating all the water on the front left.


Thanks for reading this issue...

"There are eight requisites for contented living: health enough to make work a pleasure; wealth enough to support your needs; strength enough to battle with difficulties and overcome them;grace nough to confess your sins and forsake them; patience enough to toil until some good is accomplished; charity enough to see some good in your neighbor; faith enough to make real the things of God; hope enough to remove all anxious fear concerning the future."

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

I wish for you enough of everything you need to make this summer one to remember, one to enjoy and one to make some strategic moves and decisions on your career or business.

Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey


PS: The picture is me on the top of a mountain in Northern BC a number of years back. I climbed it with a 44 pound pack on my back. What an amazing climb but what an awe inspiring view looking down at the cloud cover below us.

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. We are committed to helping you and your team profitably move to the next level.

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.

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.

We would ask you to forward this e-zine along to anyone you feel would benefit from reading what we provide and to help us build our readership. You can send a copy to a friend by clicking the 'Send this to a friend' button on the upper right of this e-zine.

Our privacy statement:

Very simply, we will NEVER sell, lend or otherwise distribute your name and contact information to any other party. We will send you such issues and updates as are deemed important to fulfilling our commitment to helping you grow your career, company or organization to the next level.

If you should decide to unsubscribe, simply hit the unsubscribe button on the upper right hand side of this e-zine or reply to this newsletter with the word 'unsubscribe' in the subject line and you will be taken off our list.

If you'd like to use articles included in this e-zine, we simply ask that you keep them intact and include the appropriate copyright and contact information for each author.

All contents Copyright © 2006, Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved worldwide. Duplication or reprints only with express permission or approved credits as indicated in the above paragraph.


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

#10, Creativity Corner
Egremont, AB T0A 0Z0