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Scott Groves
Author, Coach, Sales & Marketing Strategist...and Marathon Runner & Taco Lover!
Author, Coach, Sales & Marketing Strategist...and Marathon Runner & Taco Lover!


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I'm running for those who can't at the +Red Bull +Wings For Life World Run in Melbourne on May 3rd, 2015. Throwing out the challenge to +Jason Shortis , #samweirultra and +Jeremy Smith to join in the fun!

Loved watching this event last year. The whole world starts #running  at exactly the same time... you get 30 minutes head start and then the catcher cars come after you. You're out when they catch you.

Sign up and support #spinalchordinjury  #wingsforlife #worldrun 
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Strategic Shift: Change Gears

Albert Einstein said, "We cannot solve problems using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them".

In business, we can only reach a certain level of revenue, profitability, scale and reach with the same kind of thinking and actions before we reach a point where we need a revised strategy, a revised action plan to go to another level.

With clients, I call this a "Strategic Shift". 

Think of it a little bit like your car.... Picture yourself driving along in second gear, you're revving the engine, working it hard, but in second gear you can only reach 50 or 60km per hour. To get to 80, you need to change gears. You need a new gear. You need a new strategy.

Having a strategic approach to things is deeper than just adding on a new tactic (promotion or marketing campaign) as it will only force everyone to work harder in the same gear. Revving harder in second gear won't make your team go faster. In fact, it can have the opposite effect to what you are after and it could burn them out.

No. At some point you need to step back, get a birds eye view of things, and look at your business with fresh eyes. 

A Strategic Cull

It might mean culling the product that takes up 50% of your time in customer service but only yields 20% of the profits. 

It might mean developing your Team to leverage the innovative ideas they have had all along but have been too scared to share because they value job security over pushing the envelope with you or within the organisation. 

A simple shift could be as simple as identifying a culture built on fear and "this is how we do it here". Culture could be your bottleneck. 

Trust is a two way street

Building trust into your Team so they feel comfortable pursuing ideas for the advancement of the entire business, the good of the people you serve, and the ultimate profitability and growth of the business takes time. 

It also takes evidence.

People in leadership positions must prove by rewarding and letting go of old ways that often involve reprimanding errors and mistakes and giving people the freedom to pursue new developments with a safety net that keeps the business alive.

Google’s Genius is NOT That Technical

In David A. Vise's book, "The Google Story", he talks about Sergey Brin And Larry Page’s 20% Time Project which allows employees at Google to pursue one fifth of their work week on anything they like. 

This brilliant strategy has allowed Google to create more products, (some winners, some losers) in the last 10 years than most companies create in 100 years of business. And it's not free time and it's not without monitoring. The stories go that Google holds regular catch up sessions where people need to show how they have invested their use of time to justify their 20% freedom of creativity allowed by the online giant. It's brilliant. It's accountable. And it drives the worlds greatest online brand.

Now, you don't have to do what Google has done. But what can you do? What shift can you make? 

If you're not sure, ask! 

But you will need to ask someone who is not afraid to speak their mind and reward the uncomfortable feedback when you get it if you really want to change gears.

Most people are much smarter than we give them credit for. To stop and truly listen to your staff who are at the grindstone every day takes a little courage too. To listen to customers feedback even more so. But the CEO who gets on the phone in the customer service department will learn more in one hour than he ever could reading survey results.

Trust Your Gut

Shifting strategies doesn't always have to be the big, bold move we read about in the often repeated chronicles that make the famous pages due to their radicle nature.

A strategic shift can be simple and subtle. 

Offering a money back guarantee, when you already would give a customer their money back of they were unhappy or kicked up a stink about your product is not as radical as most business owners protest with their inner resistance. 

When you already do things, but don't market it, their is perhaps an opportunity for some real positioning. Positioning is strategic. In many cases, a business practice you have been using for years cannot even be employed by other businesses quickly without real system changes. You have a strategic advantage that gives you a window of time to position yourself in the market while the rest of the world plays catch up.

But a simple shift like this is a change of gears. It allows you to move even faster. And with this speed you move further ahead at even faster rates. And with each new shift will eventually come a plateau that will leave you thinking about the next gear change. It cycles as do all stages of business.

Natural Ebb and Flow

Embrace this natural ebb and flow. Understand just how much your foot is on the pedal. Never get complacent but just like the natural law of life that was best described by the great Jim Rohn who said, 

"If you rest too long, the weeds will overtake the garden".

 Changing gears is a choice. Changing gears can be more than just pushing harder, it can be a strategic shift. A strategic gear shift can do more than simply pushing the pedal down harder or driving for longer. If you can find a way to create a strategic shift that invigorates your people, people will automatically push a little harder under the natural excitement of growth, innovation and positive change.

Einstein knew it. Sometimes there just is a better way. But you won't arrive at top gear results will first gear thinking.

Let me know your "Strategic Shift" and how it worked - would love to hear your examples.

#strategy   #strategicshift  
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Are Leadership Traits Changing? Or Do They Need To?

In moments of silence, it’s nice to sit back and think about the world, where it’s going and what we’re leaving behind for the children of tomorrow.

For over 100 years, we’ve seen an education system centred on two subjects which was originally designed to separate officers from front line soldiers in the military. If you could read well and were good at maths you were an officer. If you can’t add up, here’s a gun - good luck!

Slowly we’ve watched an evolution. Of people. Of technology. Of learning. Of understanding.

The advances in the last decade or so have in many ways surpassed the centuries of thinking that came before it.

Google has re-organised the worlds information (along with countless other inventive projects we come to rely on in our every day lives).

The schooling system is changing too. It needs to. Doctors and lawyers were once the jobs to aspire to. Now it’s professional sports, the next music sensation, and next Silicon Valley style Billionaire with a cool app or tech creation.

These are exciting times. The opportunities are broader than ever.

Leaders Are At The Heart Of It All

In any industry, business, arts, sports - you find leaders.

Leaders are the ones who gravitate to the centre of influence that pulls others along with their example and vision.

But are the Leadership Qualities Changing?

The world is more connected. More transparent. It could be argued more social although the depth of relationships versus volume of connections is an interesting conversation for another day. 

But what real Leaders have is massive networks AND the depth of connection with people. LinkedIn identifies these as “Influencers” and it’s an appropriate title for such leaders.

So what are the traits?

Trait # 1 - Incredible Personal Communication Skills

Because the work force has changed and highly talented people and more in power of their working lives with what I like to call “the new currency” which is working with the freedom they choose. Highly talented people cannot be contained inside the walls of an office tower with a good view any longer. They want to smell the air. They want to work from under the tree instead of sit looking at the tree from behind the glass. A businesses new job is to make that happen - bean bag and all!

I still know CEO’s who worry about how it will look to others. I say “Who Cares!” The only two things that matter is…

1) Are they happy?

2) Do they get the job done?

Your best copywriter should be allowed to work in their underwear from anywhere in the world at the hours that suits them - if they produce the results. And the fact is they do!

Being so connected with the technology we have at our finger tips means creating opportunities that tick the box on both financial freedom and these days and just as importantly, location freedom and time freedom which really has become the new currency. 

People work with people they like. And highly talented people won’t stay where they are not respected and treated well. 

Communication skills become paramount in two ways.

One, you need great communication skills to understand how your remote staff are performing. You can have the systems, CRM’s, project manage with Trello or TODOIST etc - but if you don’t get an insight into their level of happiness, work satisfaction, understand their personal goals, you may lose a valuable personal asset.

Communication skills need to be written and spoken more than ever. 

The ability for key management to write well has increased. You may not get some people by phone or Skype - so you need to be able to read between the lines to understand how well settled your people are.

Trait # 2 - Holistic Visions That Benefit All Humankind “The Ripple Effect”

The Worlds best leaders have an incredible ability to think holistically, to think big, and see the dots connect beyond what most people’s thinking can keep up with. 

A business plan may not start out with a conscious thought to solve the world’s problems or even incorporate so many elements into helping others. But when a leader possesses a character ethic that is deeply engrained in “doing good” you will see these things flow from the growth of their original idea.

Richard Branson has done it countless times. Bill Gates, Warren Buffet all give millions back to charities most people have never even heard of. And I’m sure when Sergey and Larry started Google, they weren’t thinking about Google Glass or their DNA project.

Leaders are always talked about in the same sentence as the word “Vision”. But the greatest of leaders possess a strategic, connect-the-dots, holistic vision that others don’t.

The minds of **“Ripple Effect Leaders”** get glimpses of the impact and flow on effect each successful portion of their project can touch. They see it trickling throughout communities, bringing multiple businesses and people together. They see it before a single thing has started.

In the SME’s world, I meet a lot of people who don’t think of, and in some cases couldn’t care less about their impact on the world. They just want to make a buck and live their lives. And maybe that’s fine too. But we need to teach our children something about leadership for future generations. And the classic “Win-win” mentality is what sits at the heart of this “Ripple Effect” visionary-styled leadership ability and I believe it can be taught.

Trait # 3 - Childlike Curiosity

There is something magical watching a child try and figure out a stack of building blocks. To see their minds working creatively to conceptualise something that doesn’t exist yet. To understand how it works, what possibilities can come of this.

Curiosity is a leadership trait.

The energy that comes from “having to know”, or wanting answers is a powerful driver.

In personal development circles, we often hear “Action cures fear”. And I believe this is true. But I also believe “Curiosity Prevents Fear”. To wander into the woods without a map is not an act of bravery. It’s an act of curiosity. And with curiosity, fear doesn’t even arrive. So pure action then comes from curiosity. 

“Let’s see what happens” is a powerful statement. It prevents stagnation in business. The marketing department works within budget parameters but is not strangled by fear of failure when a spirit of curiosity is at the forefront. Having the guts to test and find the answers when you really “don’t know” how things will turn out, happens to be a great quality. Better than faking it like you know, when you don’t.

Freakonomics Authors, Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner new book “Think Like a Freak” talks about the 3 Words which people find hardest to say, which are “I don’t know”.

If you can embrace the “I don’t know” and stop protecting your ego with answers to questions you really don’t know, your learning potential is massively increased. Curiosity sits at the heart of this.

Leaders of Tomorrow, What Now? Go Learn!

If you are in a position of influence with children, staff or community (which basically means everyone!), you need to think about the leadership qualities and the not only the lessons we are trying to teach, but how we teach them.

To truly learn something means experiencing it. 

This article will do nothing if no action is taken. To truly develop leadership qualities, one must submit themselves to the training of an athlete in the mental realm that leads to the emotional learning only found in thinking hard, communicating a vision, trying, failing, not knowing all the answers and going to find them.

Win-win is a practice. A philosophy. A lifestyle habit that is deeply integrated into the hearts and minds of great leaders. They have developed it by winning. Winning solo and winning in teams. 

Success that breeds lessons learned breeds a cycle of more success.

Success celebrated without an understanding of how one arrived at the success, is a lost opportunity.

Leaders learn. They learn about industries. How things work. Leaders learn about the problems people face and think of ways to solve them and learn from that all over again. The learning never stops. It ties in with every trait above. Learning to communicate better has power. It saves time. Reduces errors. Makes people feel better, clearer and more empowered. 

Is Leadership Changing? Hmmm…. I don’t know!

Let me know your thoughts on “Ripple Effect Leaders” and where you see the next evolution of Leadership taking us.

Join the conversation @

#leaders #leadership   #leadershipstyles   #leadershiptraining   #visionary  
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Entrepreneurs often treat their business like their baby.

They love. Nurture. Watch and protect.

But unlike raising children, your business benefits from speed of execution. And the ability for entrepreneurs to "Let Go" and detach from these 5 core elements of business are keys to profit, learning and growth.

Working with clients for almost two decades, and having personally produced products such as books and seminar series, I know intimately the insidious time killer associated with perfectionism.

Getting caught up in making the blog post, marketing collateral, design, PR release and products just right can often see entrepreneurs cross the tipping point of actually improving something versus the time taken to improve it.

In economics, they call this the "Law of Diminishing Returns". The time invested is not justified by the improvement made so it would have been better to 'let it go' and hit Publish, Send or Print at some point days, weeks or god forbid even months ago.

Creation comes with emotional attachment. It is intimately tied with human nature and the deep psychology we have.

Leadership and management don't often spend time training staff on 'letting go' because the higher up the hierarchy you go, the greater the attachment levels as a general rule.

Learning to detach takes training.

It should be something we all practice.

With every product we create, try putting it out there when it's saleable, nor perfect. You can involve your clients and customers in the improvement process and use it to enhance your brands ability to listen to your clients. Companies are not bagged on social media for listening and acting on customer feedback, only for silence and ignoring.

When designing your marketing collateral, there is a direct correlation between how many pieces you send out versus leads and sales that come back in. The ego gets caught up in producing the 'perfect' marketing piece. But the reality of execution and distribution is a key determining factor of your success. Taking twice and long and sending out half as much marketing could be dramatically stifling sales.

Now I'm not saying produce work that is not up to standard. But raise your awareness levels of that 'Tipping Point' where the amount of improvement is probably not justified by the time invested - and just send it out!

The spiritual side of business exists. It's contained in trust, detachment, focus and awareness.

"You only lose what you cling to." - Gautama Buddha

If you can sit down and focus exclusively to produce something of quality, trust yourself, your instincts and your understanding of the people you serve and sell to, and have the awareness of when to let go - and you will find a level of productivity and profits YOU may have been hanging onto all this time.

#business  #marketing #productdevelopment #entrepreneur   #detachment  
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Gotta love a good beer prank! This is brilliant... watch now! #beerlovers #beer #prankvideo  
Best beer prank ever
Best beer prank ever
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Great article by Pete Flint I came across on LinkedIn - well worth a read to understand the subtleties between a CEO and Founder.
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Niagara Therapy Saved My Ass... Literally!

As someone who runs marathons and has personally witnessed the amazing physical transformations of people, Niagara Therapy was the first piece of therapy equipment I turned to when I severely strained my hamstring where it inserts into my gluteus maximus (my ass). 

Niagara's Portable Therapeutic Range

Although my Niagara Therapy Pad is a little older than the one in the video, the therapeutic benefits are the same.

Within one week, I have already felt significant relief. I was able to complete a 35km run on Saturday and my late entry into the 50km Kurrawa to D'bah Ultra is now feeling a little more sane (if there's such a thing).

I cannot recommend Niagara Therapy more highly. I have had these products in my home for over 10 years now and although their market is typically helping people over 50 years of age who struggle with ageing related problems, I encourage everyone who is serious about their health to give Niagara Therapy a go. 

Elite Athletes have been using Niagara for years and as a former tennis pro I understand the body and only wish I had this earlier in my life. 

There is a mountain of medical research to back this product up and you only need to look into, try it out and trust your body. You can literally feel the difference with a 20 minute treatment. The circulation benefits alone are worth every cent and given that I have owned my Niagara Therapy products for over a decade with no signs of slowing down, I can easily say I've got my money's worth.

You only live once. Live well.

P.S. 3 weeks ago I loaned my pad to my next door neighbour who was staring down a knee replacement. I wanted to ask for my pad back but didn't have the heart 'cos he needed it more than I did for a stupid race. Turns out he loved it so much, he rang Niagara Healthcare Head Office and bought one! He couldn't believe the improvements and when I saw, I couldn't either.

P.P.S. Oh yeah.... wish me luck for December 8th.
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