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6 Tips For Creating Your Dream Job

6 Tips For Creating Your Dream Job

We live in an information age. We are the founders of the future. We have so much information  constantly at our fingertips, and the capability to reach an amazingly immense amount of people at any time, it is no wonder that people have discovered how to utilize this capability to create innovative career opportunities.

In 2015, 45% of U.S. employees were able to work from home, and that number continues to rise. It is an ideal situation for many, whether you are a young entrepreneur or a stay-at-home mom. The flexibility is valued. From one business owner to another, here are some basic startup tips for anyone looking to begin an online business while striving to be able to work from home.

1. The Why

This is the most important aspect of any business. If you do not go into creating this business idea with a firm, objective purpose then it does not matter how much time and effort is put into the company. It will dissolve. Your team and yourself will have no direction and the company will fall to the wayside. People don’t necessarily buy the product, they buy the ‘why.’ What does your company stand for; what makes your product or service fulfilling?

2. Building & Design

Now that you have the why figured out a general business idea/plan it is time to start building. The tech industry has grown exponentially, especially in city centers like New York. Tech based startups are creating new jobs and opportunities at a rapid pace because the need is there. Everything is online now, so a business needs to be embracing things like social media, marketing, and analytics. These are all necessary platforms for a business to succeed and acquire new clients/customers, as well as monitor what is working and what is not.

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Things as simple as the time of day that something is published or shared can make or break a sale. Creating a website that is easy to navigate, showcases the product or service, creates a platform for added interaction with the customer through social media and is grounded in the analytics that will help guide future decision making.

Some of us are not artistically gifted, so creating a website that looks professional and will attract the customer we have in mind may not be doable without help. If so this will be your first real purchase, and it is extremely worth the time and money. It does not matter how good you are at what you do or how amazing your product might be, if the platform you are showcasing this on does not portray just that customers are not going be interested.

A well designed website goes a very long way. You have 5 seconds to get a user’s attention or you’ve lost them so make it count.

3. Marketing

Marketing is a process that takes time and can involve hours of research for a plan to be effective. There are so many different marketing avenues you can take, and each are more or less effective depending on the business using them. This is yet, another example of how analytics will help you navigate what works for your business. This is all trial and error.

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Just because the tech industry and online business is blossoming does not mean that it is easy. There will be failures, try, try again.

Your brand along with goods and/or services is a key feature that you will be marketing. Your online presence will work while you’re asleep, while you’re on holiday, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Maintaining a solid, persistent online presence is the key ingredient to a successful branding. Once a marketing strategy is in place, advertise.

4. Advertising

Being timid when it comes to self promotion will not get you far. Promoting yourself online requires some finesse. You can easily hit the wrong note or appear arrogant if all you’re talking about is yourself, so be sure to involve others in the conversation.

Once your product/image is developed and your marketing strategy is in place, present your product or service to your audience. Social media is the most common and inexpensive route to take, but there are also so many others.

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Communicating your brand with potential customers can be done through print, radio, internet ads and even television. The price varies and the reach varies as well. Like with everything else being, aware of who your audience is through analytics and marketing will help you make the most educated decisions as well as trial and error.

Every step of the way test and measure everything. You can’t grow if you don’t change what isn’t working. If you are not faithfully testing, measuring and tracking your results then you will never know.

5. Legal and Financial Considerations

If you plan to advertise online (which you most likely are and SHOULD be), whether you’re buying ads on search engines or direct marketing through email understanding some basic rules is important.

Understanding the federal advertising laws to Internet advertising and marketing, complying with the law when developing online ads, things like CAN-SPAM that creates criminal prohibitions against those who knowingly transmit spam through others’ computers without authorization as well as help with navigating sales and eCommerce and utilizing those resources.

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Do your research on what works and what doesn’t, what is legal and what is not and what you can afford to make happen right away considering both time and cost.

6. Drive

What it all comes down to is the drive and ambition of all of those involved, the ‘why’ has to be united. Start ups lose money often before making any, so keep in mind that you won’t always be able to monetize all of your projects even though they were successful.

It may seem backwards, but if you are going into building your business, your brand, in an avenue that you find fulfilling–looking at money as a resource instead of a goal may be the best way to approach your endeavors.This “goal” creates a space that keeps the drive behind the initial reason for starting the business. The fulfillment stays the focus.

There are no foolproof books on how to build a successful online business, especially with the pace of change. The best way to learn is by doing so take the necessary steps and do. The opportunities are endless.

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Published on November 23, 2020

How to Develop Big Picture Thinking And Think More Clearly

How to Develop Big Picture Thinking And Think More Clearly

Your neighbors downstairs are playing loud music. Again. How do they not get tired of partying? And why do they choose songs with such a heavy downbeat that the glass in your cupboard is vibrating every two seconds? What can you do to get some peace that you deserve? What should you?

Human mind tends to go in circles whenever faced with a problem without a clear solution. It becomes easy to forget the big picture and get lost in anger and self-pity, wasting our precious time, energy and enthusiasm.

Would it not be nice if we always remembered to put things in perspective?

Would it not be more efficient to face all kinds of problems, from tiny annoyances to life-changing emergencies, with a calm demeanor, sharp focus and fearless determination to promptly take the most efficient action possible?

Alas, humans are not like that. All too often we let anxiety or greed get the best of us and make a rushed or shortsighted decision that we quickly come to regret. Other times, we spend weeks or months at an impasse, rehashing the exact same arguments, unable to accept the compromise required to move forward with any of the available options.

Buddhists talk about getting lost in the “small self.” In this state of mind, we literally forget the big picture and focus on the small one. We start taking our daily problems too personally and, paradoxically, becomes less capable of solving them in an efficient manner. And this is the opposite of big picture thinking.

Let me share with you a story related to big picture thinking…

In 1812, the French army of Napoleon Bonaparte invaded Russia.[1] After a decisive Battle of Borodino, the capture of Moscow and therefore Napoleon’s victory in the war seemed inevitable.

Unexpectedly, the Russian Commander-in-Chief Mikhail Kutuzov made a highly controversial decision of retreating and allowing the French to capture Moscow. Much of the population had been evacuated taking supplies with them. The city itself was set on fire and large parts of it burned into the ground.

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After waiting in vain for Russia to capitulate, Napoleon had to retreat in the middle of a bitterly cold winter. He won the battle but lost the war. The campaign ended in a disaster and the near destruction of the French army.

What can we learn from this historical lesson?

1. Focus on the Consequences

Napoleon focused on the important part: capturing Moscow. Nobody could accuse him of thinking small. Yet he overlooked that the Russian army could still fight even after giving up the country’s most important city.

So was Moscow not an important target after all?

Success expert Brian Tracy has a litmus test: things are important to the extent that they have important consequences. Things are unimportant to the extent that they have no important consequences.[2]

When faced with a choice, ask yourself, what would be the consequences of each option?

  • Want to spend an hour studying or watching the new series on Netflix? What would be the consequences of each option? Netflix can sometimes be a better choice, but it helps to put things in perspective.
  • Want to maintain your apartment by yourself or to pay a cleaning service? Would would be the consequences of each option?
  • Want to meet up for coffee with this acquaintance of yours or catch up on your work instead? What would be the consequences of each option?

The choice can be different for different people. An aspiring filmmaker may have a legitimate reason for choosing Netflix. Personally, cleaning your own apartment can be relaxing and nourishing even if the economics of hiring a cleaner looks compelling because you are earning a high hourly rate.

This is where you will need a basic idea of who you are — what are your goals, values and aspirations.

2. Flip Defeat Into Victory

Kutuzov managed to turn Russia’s defeat into a historic victory by recasting the problem in a wider context: losing Moscow need not mean losing the war.

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Despite the symbolic meaning attached to the Kremlin, the churches, the priceless treasures that had been stored in the city for centuries, the outcome of the campaign was ultimately determined by the strength of the remaining armies.

If you can adopt this result-oriented perspective, many of your personal defeats may be flipped into victories as well. Few events in a human life are absolutely good or absolutely bad, and it usually takes many years to recognize in retrospect, what role a particular encounter did play in your story.

Therefore we have every reason to look for the good in the things that happen to us.

This is a very practical attitude, far from baseless “positive thinking.” After all, if something unfortunate has happened to you and you find good sides in this circumstance, you will then be better positioned to take advantage of those good sides.

Say your noisy neighbors are affecting your productivity. What if it is a blessing in disguise? How can you turn this defeat into a victory?

  • Perhaps you are too serious about life and could learn how to have more fun. Join your neighbors or go out for a walk instead of working;
  • Perhaps you only wanted to be productive while instead procrastinated on social media. Now that your procrastination has been interrupted, stop and acknowledge this much greater obstacle to your productivity;
  • Perhaps you are too sensitive to interference. Take this opportunity to practice ignoring the noise and doing your best anyway;
  • Perhaps you have a victim mentality and the feeling of unfairness drains you more than any actual nuisance your neighbors might have caused. Try accepting this lapse in your productivity the way you would accept bad weather.

Get used to finding opportunities in your problems. This is the quintessential big picture thinking.

3. Ask for Advice

Both Napoleon and Kutuzov had trusted advisers to discuss their affairs with. In general, getting a different perspective — or several — can only help inform your understanding and lead to better decisions. Just ensure that the people giving you advice are competent in the particular area where experience is needed.

Paying money for advice can also be a wise investment. Lawyers, tax accountants, medical doctors spend years learning how to assist people like yourself in living more successful, more fulfilling lives.

A quick legal consultation can save you a fortune down the line or even keep you out of big trouble. A medical check-up can uncover potential issues and help keep you healthy and active for years to come.

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Even big, complex dilemmas at your job or in your romantic relationship can be tackled more effectively by partnering up with a coach or a therapist or, of course, with the help of a wise friend.

4. Beware of Biased Advice

Many imperfect decisions occur in response to an imperfect piece of advice that you choose to act on. This advice often comes from a biased party.

For example, we are often encouraged to buy something that we supposedly need:

  • Protect your skin from harmful UV rays by using a special lotion.
  • Fortify your health by taking multivitamins.
  • Connect with your friends by sending them elaborate gifts.
  • Brighten your weekend by consuming a delicious pastry.
  • Become more productive by getting a faster computer.

However, most purchases are unnecessary.

Some, such as the sunscreen, do have legitimate benefits when used properly.[3] Others, such as multivitamins, only make a difference for a small group of people.[4]

Advertisers of those benefits inevitably want to narrow your focus in order to overstate the importance of their product. They frequently present it as the only solution to your problem, whether real or imaginary.

After all,

  • Skin can also be protected from the sun by wearing appropriate clothing.
  • Health can be better fortified by consuming a balanced diet and getting regular exercise.
  • Spending time or talking on the phone with your friends is the foremost way of connecting with them, and it is virtually free.
  • Your weekend can be brightened by doing something that you love.
  • You can become more productive by focusing on the tasks that have the most important consequences. A faster computer can, in fact, decrease productivity by making it easier to multitask and by enabling your favorite distractions.

There are other sources of imperfect advice. Politicians also frequently want us to focus on a particular “big picture,” to the exclusion of the alternatives.

Even loving parents can be guilty of the same. They can advise their children to pick a career path that is safe and respectable, based on their “big picture” that in life one has to make a living. A child may disagree, however, based on another “big picture” that one’s life has to have meaning and fulfillment.

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Bottom Line

It is human nature to make rushed, emotional decisions based on incomplete information, then regret those decisions later on.

You can protect yourself from poor judgment by striving to attain the big picture when careful consideration is called for.

Focus on the consequences of your decision before considering how you feel about it.

Play with the cards you’ve been dealt, but look for opportunities in each situation and you will find them.

Ask knowledgeable mentors for advice, but beware of biased people who have an opinion, but do not necessarily have your best interest in mind.

Yet remember, true big picture thinking comes from hard-won experience. Legendary military commanders Napoleon Bonaparte and Mikhail Kutuzov were both injured on the battlefield.

Clear thinking comes from putting your big picture to the test of reality.

More Tips on Thinking Clearly

Featured photo credit: Haneen Krimly via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Wikipedia: French invasion of Russia
[2] Brian Tracy: No Excuses!: The Power of Self-Discipline
[3] American Academy of Dermatology: Say Yes to Sun Protection
[4] Harvard Medical School: Do multivitamins make you healthier?

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