maximum potential

these are the thought starters, insights, and inspiration to get you, and the brands you manage, to reach your maximum potential

that’s great, but are you moving forward

today we will do a million things.  we will talk to a million people, sit in a million meetings, and move a million things through some ‘system.’  we will present one million ideas to clients, bosses, and employees.  we will send out a million resumes or use a million words to convince an employer of how great we are and why we are the right person for the job.

but what are you doing to move your brand forward?  is what you’re doing taking your brand to the next level?  a brilliant new campaign is not brilliant if it doesn’t progress the brand forward.  a brilliant interview response is not brilliant if it does not move the perception of who you are forward.  it doesn’t matter how smart you sound or how great your thoughts are, if they are not moving your brand to a better place they are worthless.  all action is not good action.  next time you do something, make sure your moving forward.


Filed under: lifemark, , , , ,

what’s stopping you?

by now you have certain instinctual reactions to things in life based on nature and the experiences of your past.  some of these reactions are based on positive emotions while others are rooted in the more negative ones.  and it is usually the negative ones that prevent us from doing certain things in life.  after all, many of our negative emotions are there to protect us.  for example, without fright you might try to pet the wild tiger instead of run from it.   but those emotions can sometimes deceive us.  

those negative emotions are sometimes doing their job when it isn’t necessary.  they sometimes try to protect you when you don’t need to be protected.  sometimes those feelings are unjustified.  and it is those times, when you respond to unsubstantiated emotions, that you will fail to make “it” happen, and therefore miss out, because you didn’t follow through on…  starting that business…sending the email…allowing yourself to love and be loved…going on that interview…making that career change…or taking that leap.  

next time your instincts try to protect you from doing something “risky” (besides standing in front of a loaded a gun) think about it.  is it as risky as it seems?  is your fear justified?  do the costs really outweigh the benefits?  if not, turn upside down, take your hands off the wheel, and let loose.  seriously, what’s stopping you?  

my upside down zip line ride in costa rica

my upside down zip line ride in costa rica

Filed under: inspiration, personal branding, , , ,

one answer to 21stcitizen

we just launched 21stcitizen.  the core of the idea behind 21stcitizen is the belief that with the incredible rights we are given as people is an implicit responsibility to make the world better.  the question the brand asks us all to answer is: what are you doing to become a better citizen of the 21st century?   i wanted to share my answer, which I call the 3p approach, on my blog.  

my 3p approach

  1. i live my life on purpose.  i sincerely believe that individuals are blessed with gifts and talents for a reason, those gifts and talents are ultimately for accomplishing some purpose that is much bigger than the individual.  consequently, i do most things on purpose, which means they are connected to my purpose or at least directionally accurate based on what i believe my purpose to be.
  2.  i seek to perfect myself so that my gifts and talents increase daily, which better enables me to fulfill my purpose.  i do this by aligning my gifts/talents with what i do everyday (re: job), exposing myself to the impossible as a way to increase my dreams, chasing knowledge, and pushing myself to pursue and accomplish the improbable.
  3. perform.  This can only come after having made purposeful decisions and done as much as possible to perfect my talents so that i can be my best me at any given point and time.  these are the macro and micro actions I commit that act as vehicles to create change in the lives of my family, my community, and myself.  so what are some of my actions?  i give to my community (time and money), i blog to impact lives  (still working on perfecting this, of course), i attempt to help grow the hopes and dreams of those who entrust me with the privilege, and i do motivational speaking (wherever they are crazy enough to invite me to come) to name a few.

the point i want to leave you with is that performing (macro and micro actions alike) is only a part of what it takes to be a 21stcitizen.  it also requires that we live our lives on purpose and continuously try to become the best the people we can be.  Then, and only then, are we able to perform at our best for our families and the world alike.  what are you doing to become a 21stcitizen?

  • join the discussion and fan the facebook page here
  • watch the video here
  • leave your ideas and thoughts here


Filed under: lifemark, personal branding, , , , ,

how many revenue streams do you have?

in our personal lives, most of us only have one, our employer.  having only one revenue stream is an extremely risky position to take in life.  most businesses don’t do it.  i’m not saying they don’t exist, but i am saying it’s extremely risky, especially in this economy.  if you were 100% dependent on lehman or general motors (as a vendor or employee) last year you are in trouble.

in a world where no job is safe and entire industries are buckling there is no better time to find an additional revenue

 stream.  start a company, learn to make money off of your blog, start a newspaper, collect junk from garage sales and sell it on ebay at a higher price.  just do something.  your circle is depending on you.  

and if you happen to be a part of a business with only one revenue stream, please reThink that position.  get new clients, new products, new customers, new money.  

this is not about being afraid; fear is not a healthy emotion 95% of the time.  this is good business sense both for your personal brand, your company, your customers, and everyone that depends on you.  after all, it’s a lot more difficult to serve your customers or your circle if you are going out of business.  

to me, there is no riskier position than to have one revenue stream in a bleeding economy.

Filed under: business branding, lifemark, personal branding, , , , , , , , ,

my blog is changing

i’m a doer.  i get stuff done.  i jump in head first, learn, and course correct.  that’s the approach i took with this blog.  over the last month i have had several people comment on my blog template (a lot of you who knew me didn’t think it matched my personal lovemark).  like all good marketers, i listened to your feedback and now have a new blog design in the works.  i am also moving the blog off wordpress to be hosted at (apologies to anyone who is going to the brand name first right now and having to clickthrough to the wordpress site).   during the “in-between” phase i have updated my blog to a template that is hopefully more in line with who i am (just got inspired for a new blog post).  

i just wanted to say thanks to all of you for reading and to let you know that i have heard your feedback and will be making changes shortly.  stay tuned.

Filed under: lifemark, , , ,

“snow is to play in, not to look at it…”

that’s the quote that i heard from my 8 year old nephew this morning as he complained about how his teachers would not let him play in the snow at school. to him it was simple,”the snow is not just going to turn itself into a snowball or a snowman,” he complained.

i learned three lessons from him this morning:

  1. life and business lessons come from any where, even 8 year old kids…if you’re listening
  2. life and business are simple. start the business, ask for the job, make the decision…don’t complicate it.
  3. life and business are viewed differently by different people. some people look at the snow and see a problem, while others look at the snow and see what it can be (the snowman and the snowball). which type of person are you?

Filed under: lifemark, personal branding, , , , , ,

2009 brand of the year

great brands…


…connect emotionally as well as logically


…change lives





… move people to action





…do the impossible







…create change






only one month into 2009 and it’s clear that barack obama is the brand of the year (probably century).  and watching things transpire over the last few months it has become clear to me that a great brand can only be human.  there are products, services, and companies that we all love and respect, but can they ever be truly great?  

brands are built on relationships and connections and, for most of us, the strongest connections we will build in our lives will be to other people.  consequently, each one of us harnesses the ability to be their own unique and truly great brand.  the question is, do you have the courage to try?  

(for the most amazing display of barack obama’s inauguration, told completely through pictures, click here. )

Filed under: inspiration, lifemark, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

3 reminders of the power of social media

asocial media took power out of the hands of the giants and placed it in the hands of their consumer. although each voice wields different influence, we all now have a voice.  i am reminded of this because i was contacted by my hotel management today regarding this post.  although we have yet to talk, here are three lessons i learned already:

  • there will be reactions to what you or your brand says. and, although you must try to create as many positive reactions as possible, you cannot please everyone (so don’t attempt to do so).  
  • with all power comes responsibility.  commenting, blogging, tweeting, and the likes, are all forms of power and you must remember to be a responsible member of the community, which you are a part of
  • brands will be rewarded for their participation.  my respect for the westin book cadillac has increased today without even speaking to anyone.  why?  because, not only were they were listening for my voice, but they also acted.  someone was monitoring their brand and they chose to do something about what they saw.  i applaud you wbc!



If You Read This, Tweet This to your Followers:  

3 reminders of the power of social media:

Filed under: business branding, lifemark, , , , , , , , ,

what are you saying/doing?

prince harry now has to apologize.  what do you say and do when you think no one is watching?  would you still say and do the same things if you thought the world would find out?  don’t forget: every action, has a reaction.

Filed under: lifemark, personal branding, , ,

a life of (re)actions

every action has a reaction   




every action has a reaction

‘every action has a reaction.’   sometimes those actions may yield very positive results or positive reactions; and other times, our actions may produce negative results or painful reactions.  nevertheless, every action has a reaction.  and there will be times that we just won’t know the full impact of some of the actions we take because the reactions-good or bad-can extend far beyond what we see and know (see cartoon)

so then, how careful are we about our actions?  how mindful are we about the potential impact on others of the decisions that we make?  what about the impact on ourselves or on our world?  when you cussed out your employees, treated your girlfriend like she didn’t exist for a day (instead of like a queen), or failed to give that homeless person a dollar did you think about the consequences?  

 sometimes i do; sometimes i don’t.  but whether i do or not, the reality is, there will will be consequences.  I do my best to do the studying, reading, training, and praying necessary to acquire the wisdom, knowledge, and point of view that I need to have so that I can take the best actions at the best times.  there will be moments when i will fail miserably.  but, at the end of the day, my hope and prayer is that the aggregation of the positive actions i produce far outweighs the negative ones.  Simply put, I want to leave the world and the people I come into contact with better than how I found it/them.  

i also find consolation in knowing who i am and my belief that 99% of the time, action is better than no action.  i am an action-oriented person.  period. it’s one of my talents (see ACTIVATOR).  some people plan. these people will take 20 minutes printing out every google map so they can figure out how to get across town.  i’d rather jump right in and figure it out along the way.  to me, i learn best from my acting not necessarily my planning.  it’s a gift and a curse i have accepted.  this alone is an action with numerous reactions because it has enabled me to accomplish some great things at such a young age; and on the flip side it has caused error, rework, and pain.  

today, i reflect on some of my actions that are currently having negative reactions; but ultimately, for me, it is better to do something, than to do nothing at all.  i learn better and faster that way.

Filed under: personal branding, , , ,



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