Ideas@Work! - Strategies for Success

March 4, 2008

In this issue...
• Point to Ponder
• The magic power of "What if?"
• Last minute thoughts and ideas
• Upcoming changes for the Ideas At Work e-zine
• Thanks for reading

Point to Ponder

"Who are the happiest people on earth?"

"A craftsman or artist whistling over a job well done. A child building sand castles. A mother, after a busy day, bathing her baby. A doctor who has finished a difficult and dangerous operation and saved a human life. Happiness lies in a constructive job well done. Get your happiness out of your work or you will never know what happiness is."

Elbert Hubbard

March is definitely a month for personal motivation. For many of us in business, March is the end of first quarter of the year. March is a great time to pause, reflect, and revise what you have been doing. March is also a great time to pause, refresh, and push ahead on those critical, constructive projects and activities which move your career or business to a more productive level.

March is a time to make sure you are doing what you love, something that brings a sense of satisfaction, feeds your passion, and, yes, even adds happiness to your life. Nothing is tougher than working in a role or for a company that saps your energy, devalues your contribution, or ignores your potential. 

A wise man once told me, "If you love what you do, you'll never work another day in your life." After a decade and a bit, working as a motivational speaker, sales and leadership writer, business success coach, and inspirational author, I am begining to understand what he meant. Simply, I love what I do and the chance to leverage my learning to help other folks. I love the feedback I get from our readers and audience members as to how we have been able to encourage or equip them to make positive changes and reap profitable results. That keeps me going and feeds my passion.

That is not to say I don't work at it or even struggle at times. Any business has times of challenge and change that impact our day-to-day motivation. I have endured periods where I truly wondered about the wisdom of choosing this path, like the period following 911. I have disciplined myself to stay the course, to keep pushing, to keep working, to keep writing, to keep speaking, and to keep believing in what I offer to the world.  You can too!

If you are not working in a role you love, look for ways to change it to be more reflective of what you want and value in life. If that doesn't work, then give serious thought to brushing off your resume and look for a place that fits and allows you to grow. If that doesn't work for the short term, look for community activities that feed your soul and give you an enhanced sense of purpose. Life is too short to labor while undervaluing yourself, your gifts, and your expertise.

Make March a motivational month. Move ahead with productive activities and involvements that make sense to you and make you a happier person. You'll be glad you did and so will everyone around you.

©2008 Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey

Picture was taken at one of our CAPS National conventions. I love my work!


The magic power of "What if?"

"FedEx became an international powerhouse and one of the most trusted global brands by implementing leadership practices that tapped into the discretionary effort, creativity, and commitment of its employees at all levels of the organization – the foundation of a thriving innovation and performance culture."

Madan Birla, FedEx Delivers

by Bob Hooey 

Some of the greatest businesses and business innovations have been built on the creative answers generated around this simple, yet probing question, "What if...?"

Fred Smith of Fed-Ex pondered, "What if we launch an airline committed to providing overnight express service to a growing need? What if we built it around a hub and spoke system?" It worked very well!

Walt Disney, after taking his granddaughter to an amusement park and seeing the dirty park, run down rides, and bored adults wondered, "What if there was a place where adults and kids could play together? What if it was the happiest place on earth?" Figure that worked pretty well, don't you?

Sam Walton asked lots of ‘what if’ questions when he met with his Wal-Mart leadership team each week. One of them was, "What if we find a way to connect the cash register to our inventory planning systems and use this to continue substantial cost reductions for our business?" When he discovered something interesting in another business or operation he would ask, "What if we adapt that ‘idea’ to our business here at Wal-Mart?" He was successful in his quest.

Jack Welsh from GE asked, "What if we focused on being either number one or number two in each of our product divisions and sold off the rest?" He also asked, "What if we work to create a borderless work environment where departments actually talk and work together?" It worked successfully to build a world class company!

Eiji Toyoda and his successive Toyota design and management teams asked, "What if we look for ways to decrease waste in our process and make what we do better for our customers? What if we involved our teams in the quality control process as our vehicles are on the production line and empowered them to stop it when they saw something wrong?" Toyota went on to revolutionize manufacturing.

What if you took your company or organization and helped it evolve into a "company of leaders" or a "team of empowered leaders"? How would that impact your performance or profitability? Would it help you and your team be easier to do business with?

Ask yourself, What if:

I took increased personal responsibility and leadership in my current role?

  • I looked at everything I do with an eye to improve it?
  • There was an easier, faster, more cost effective way?
  • I looked at ways to help my team members succeed in other areas?
  • There was a way I can help them succeed here?
  • I looked for ways to help our customers or community deal with us?
  • I explored new ideas for products or profitable services we could provide to our customers and community?
  • I looked at educating myself to be better equipped to lead?
  • I looked at better ways of communicating my ideas upward?
  • I looked into ways to become a more effective team player?

WOW! – Just imagine!

Asking questions like these is the beginning of wisdom. It is the gateway or first step to increased productivity, success, and profitability in business and your career.  

The second step in this business success formula is acting on the answers drawn from your research. Ideas At Work! The application or action is important.    

Madan Birla, author of FedEx Delivers, made this point; "True, Fred Smith had the original business idea, but it was the creativity and commitment of employees that turned it into a successful business. The employees of FedEx have designed and delivered unique customer value propositions (what customers value) that have kept FedEx one step ahead of the competition."  Hmmm! Might we learn from this example?

© 2008 Bob ‘Idea Man’ Hooey, All rights reserved. Excerpt from Bob's, "In the Company of Leaders" coming summer of 2008

Henry Ford and Thomas Edison asked lots of these questions and thier leadership created some very profitable business ventures based on their answers.  


Last minute thoughts and ideas

February was an active month; but, I think I might have taken this multi-tasking a bit far tho'

  • Finished a new Motivational Sales Quotes series for inclusion on Secret Selling Tips website. We have upwards of 100 unique visitors each day visit the site and we want to create something to capture their emails and get them involved. Have also created, "How to generate more sales" as a complimentary e-book for those signing up for this no-cost introductory series. It is now available on-line, so you can check it out. Simply visit the Secret Selling Tips site and sign up. (We are already having people sign up... how cool is that?) This series will evolve into a paid one with a shorter, introductory series being used to capture our visitor's attention and email addresses. So feel free to beta test it in its present format.
  • Created a larger "Sales Success" ebook as a bonus for those signing up for our paid subscription to Secret Selling Tips. We now have it available for single and small group subscriptions. Follow this link to find out how to subscribe and get this new bonus book along with your paid subscription.

For a limited time, you can get the bonus book and subscribe for only $50 for the first year.

  • Have created the templates for our Motivational Leadership Quotes and Motivational Success Quotes series. Now, I have to write Again, we will use these to get folks started with us and hopefully they will upgrade to our upcoming paid subscription programs. 
  • Moving along nicely with year two of Secret Selling Tips - half way there with the 2008 issues, so that is good. Sandrine is translating into French for our French version, so doing well.
  • Hoping to get into the studio in March to record a few more tips and ideas.  
  • Feb 15th: Was included on CITY-TV's "Your Town" segement along with an amazing image consultant and CAPS friend, Joanne Blake. We were both invited to view video clips of the major Alberta leaders running in the provincial election and made comments on their media image and how they came across.
  • Had my consultation with my friend Barbara Seminuk. Barb was one of the three speakers who each paid $625 for a half day coaching and consulting session with me at our joint CAPS Edmonton/Calgary session in Red Deer last June.
  • Feb 16: Going away party for a young friend Graham who is being posted to Afganistan for up to 9 months. He has always wanted to be a soldier, but his mom is understandably concerned about her son.
  • Feb. 22: Was invited to appear on Breakfast TV (6:45AM) to offer comments following the Leader's debates (Alberta provincial election) the night before.
  • Feb. 29th: Conducted my "Speaking for Success" workshop in Hinton, Alberta. Had a few insurance agents attend who needed credit hours. This course is one of the ones we provide that is accredited by the Alberta Insurance Commission. What a great group of folks, including 4 who worked at the local Brick franchise store. 


  • Just registered for this year's Drop Zone in support of Easter Seals. I hope some of you would support me again this year, as I would love to raise over $5000 this year. Follow this link to safely make an online donation to Easter Seals.
  • March 1st: presented a multi-topic, hands on workshop in Hinton. Covered ideas such as how to be an effective Emcee, power point, and other presentation skills topics.
  • March 8th: CAPS Edmonton professional development meeting with Kristin J. Arnold and International Federation President, Joseph Sherren. It will be great.
  • March 10th: Chris Ford, International President of Toastmasters International will be speaking in St. Albert. I am going to attend, reconnect with Chris, and ask him a few questions as I prepare for my Leadership Keynote at their world convention in Calgary this August.
  • March 15: Schedule permitting attend CAPS Calgary.
  • Lots of design, filming, recording, writing and marketing work to create and complete. Lots of new ideas to develop and get out there. I love what I
  • Irene from Vitrak Creative Services is helping create our online store where folks can purchase books, CDs, sign up for our various online programs.
  • Ramping up our 2008 Alberta Speakers online promotional team. A few changes, but the majority of our partners have signed on for year two and many have reported it was helpful in landing paid engagements over the past year. We will offer a few spots and then move into year two. This program is a bit different than our our sites (eg. Edmonton Speakers, Calgary Speakers, Vancouver Speakers) in that we have agreed to place print advertising and conduct other promotional approaches to create interest in our website. The value of leveraged teamwork.
  • Working on two new leadership books for publication prior to my leadership keynote at the Toastmasters International convention in Calgary in August. One will be a pocket wisdom book, similar to the one we did for Secret Selling Tips. The second will feature guest experts on leadership and teamwork, similar to what we did for Quantum Success.  Already getting responses from expert guest authors for the second one.


Upcoming changes for the Ideas At Work e-zine

Did you know that this is Alexander Graham Bell Week?

Alexander Graham Bell was born on March 3, 1847, in Scotland .

He received a patent for the telephone on March 7, 1876. And on March 10, 1876, he transmitted the first successful phone message when he yelled to his assistant, "Mr. Watson, come here!"  Change happens...

We will be moving into our 4th year with our upcoming May 2008 issue.

Where does the time fly?  We will be making some changes in both format and delivery of our ezine to better serve you and leverage our investment.

We have been designing and delivering e-letters for our  successful Secret Selling Tips via our aweber account now since last summer and have found it to be a good system. Nice, as it is a double opt in system for subscriptions: What that means is you need to confirm your subscription following an email you will get from me or Ideas @  Very simple really.

Awber will automatically send you a confirmation email asking if you want to subscribe, sometime later this month, once we import our subscribers list from My Mailout.

This confirmation is for the new subscription service via aweber. Please open it and click to confirm to be put on the new aweber list. 

For anyone who does not confirm that initial email, we will send you another email requesting confirmation about a month later. Following that, anyone who has not subscribed via the new aweber service will be taken off the subscription list. We may send one more aweber confirmation following our last issue via My Mailout in mid May.

We hope you will confirm and continue to enjoy our ideas and articles for many years to come.

We will be creating the new template for our 4th year launch in May. We will be creating sign up links for Ideas @ Work on our various sites to replace those used now for My  Mailout. We will continue duplicate delivery of the Ideas @ Work ezine via for both the April and May issues and then discontinue delivery using that service.

We have been very happy with service we have gotten from My Mailout and would highly recommend it to anyone starting a newsletter or ezine. However, we have found we can create our Ideas @ Work subscription list in our aweber account without any additional cost. We also have further room to grow the list.


Thanks for reading

Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey would be pleased to be a part of your success team and to work with you to help make your conference, meeting or training event a success. 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.

Ask about our innovative leadership and/or sales leaders' motivational training programs.


PS: Can one person make a difference? Yes!

If you are new to our Ideas At Work! family, welcome aboard.  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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What's New!

  • Get a personal copy of "How to generate more sales" with your complimentary subscription to Secret Selling Tips, Motivational Sales Quotes service.
  • Subscribe to our paid, Secret Selling Tips, Sales Leader's Success Program and get a complimentary copy of Bob's new 'Sales Success' ebook. For a limited time, you get both for only $50.
  • Watch for Secret Leadership Tips, Motivational Quotes series, coming soon.
  • Watch for Secret Success Tips, Motivational Quotes series, coming soon.
  • Registered for the 2008 Drop Zone campaign in support of Easter Seals. Last year, I raised $3200 in support of this worthy group by rappeling down the outside of a 27 story building.  


Professional speaker, author, leadership, sales, and business success expert

Bob is a long time (over a decade) leader and professional member of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers, a member of NSA-Arizona, 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 a past president of CAPS Vancouver, an honorary founding member of CAPS Sask., an honorary member of CAPS Halifax, as well as being an active member of CAPS Edmonton. He served as 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


#10, Creativity Corner
Egremont, AB T0A 0Z0