• Check out The Aspire Success Story

    Learn how clients have succeeded with Aspire (right click and 'save as').

     

    Success Stories 

     

  • Sign Up for a Free email Series!

    Leading Your Business To Success!

    A free (but valuable) resource - you'll learn essential strategies to grow your business...the right way!

    sign up here!

     

     

  • CATEGORIES

  • RSS Feed

  • Sign Up for Email Updates for Blog

    Enter your email address:

    Delivered by FeedBurner

  • Recent Posts

  • Google+

  • Archives

    View All Archives

  • Aspire »

    28 Dec

    photo by pshutterbug

    Are you building your business on a shaky foundation?  When times are good, you can grow revenues and profits, even without a solid core for your business…however when times are tough (like the last couple of years), an unstable business is one that’s not going to last.

    What makes for a solid and stable business?  Clearly you have to have a viable business model – the days of being able to ‘make it up in volume’ are long gone.  Can you make legitimate profit from what you’re doing or selling?

    You have to have the right people in the right places – especially in a small business, there’s little room for error and any one person can have a huge impact (good or bad) on the outcome of your business.

    Finally – a big part of your long term stability comes from your core values, your operating principles, the unique stamp that drives why and how you do business.

    What does that mean?  Let’s look at an example:

    Read More…

    23 Dec

    This is the perfect time of year to sit back and relax.

    Enjoy your family, enjoy your friends.

    Take some time to purposely not think about all the stuff you normally think about.

    Let your mind drift, play some games, read a great book, catch a movie…whatever works best for you.

    It looks like we’ve got a pretty good shot at a white Christmas here in Kansas City – it hasn’t happened in quite a while…take the kids outside and do some sledding!

    Here’s wishing you and yours a fantastic holiday season – shut down the computer, head into the kitchen and grab yourself a cup full of holiday cheer!

    Shawn Kinkade  Kansas City Business Coach

    Photo by shermeee

    20 Dec

      Photo by andy_c

    Maybe this has happened to you.  You’ve got a great idea for a new product or a new business – something you just know people are going to be lining up to buy.  You do some quick back of the napkin business planning and realize that you need to get the word out on your new brilliant stuff!  You need a website, or advertising or public relations!

    The problem is that you’ve jumped directly to a marketing tactic and you’ve totally skipped the marketing strategy!

    I’ve talked before about the importance of consistency when it comes to winning the marketing game – consistency comes from having a clear strategy for your marketing to begin with and then being able to stick to a plan.  However you have to have the plan first!

    Not sure what I mean?  Here are 5 questions that will help you form your strategy first:

    Read More…

    16 Dec

    In the spirit of the season, I wanted to share some really cool ‘gifts’ that I ran across this week – fascinating, helpful, interesting and fun.  I don’t know if you’ll get stuff this cool at home during the holidays (apologies if I’m spoiling you).  ;-)

    Gift 1 – the Gift of Challenge

    Hopefully you’re familiar with Seth Godin – his approach is unlike anyone else on the internet.  I’d suggest that more people should emulate him, but I’m not sure it would work – he’s interesting and unique and he does some really cool things that are just him.

    His latest cool thing is organizing a free eBook he’s giving away on his site.  It has some ties to promoting some charitable organizations, but mostly it’s a series of 1 page essays written by a very diverse group of authors and experts with a general theme of what they are all thinking about and doing now.

    It’s called What Matters Now and it’s well worth the download – go check it out.

    I especially enjoyed Hugh MacLeod, Howard Mann, Jackie Huba and Ben McConnell, Daniel Pink to name a few – who challenged your thinking?

    Gift 2 – the Gift of Tech

    Special thanks to Don Rossberg of KCDataworks – he was the first to point out Seth’s eBook to me and he also wrote a great blog post recently on the 12 Days of (free) Tech where he shares 12 online tech tools / gadgets that are free and more importantly really helpful stuff.  He covers everything from Xobni (check it out – highly recommended) to a way to print things easily and quickly to a PDF format.

    By the way, if you are a business owner who’s struggling with the appropriate tech support and you’d like to work with someone you can trust, someone who can actually talk to you like a person AND knows what they’re talking about – you should meet with Don.  He’s a great guy and would be a huge benefit to any small business owner!

    Gift 3 – the Gift of Ooooh and Aaaaah

    One of the reasons why I like Twitter is that it’s a great way to find stuff that you’d never come across on your own.  It’s like walking along a beach and getting to see all sorts of interesting stuff wash up.  One of the things that washed up this afternoon was a really cool photography site that will grab your attention and make your jaw drop.

    The first post is a set of 360 degree panoramic photos from stunning locations (like the top of Mount Everest)!  I’m not sure how they got some of these shots, but it is very cool (make sure to click through to get to the actual 360 shot).  You can find the panoramic gallery here.

    As if that wasn’t cool enough – the same site has a set of extreme macro photos of Snowflakes, which are amazingly beautiful and a lot more varied and interesting than I would have thought – check out the Snowflakes here.

    What cool online things are you sharing these days?  Share them in the comments below – I’d love to check them out.

    Shawn Kinkade Kansas City Business Coach

    13 Dec

      photo by mangpages 

    The ability to have a strong handle on what needs to be done, when it needs to be done and who’s going to do it is often the difference between success and frustration.  I know lots of talented, fun and overall really nice people who are…for lack of a better word…unreliable.  They mean well, but their follow-through, their ability to consistently get things done just isn’t there.

    The thing about Personal Effectiveness is that it’s personal.  What works for me likely won’t work for you, at least not without some tweaking and vice versa.  Most people have some kind of system / process or tools to stay on top of things – it could be an elaborate system like Getting Things Done or as simple as as a stack of post-it notes.

    Whatever you use, there’s some element that involves keeping a list of things that need to be done – pen and paper are great for a to-do list (and can be invaluable for thinking out loud) but here are some other interesting online tools worth looking into.

    Read More…