Your Coaching Cause

If you are in the business of coaching (or any business for that matter), there are at least two marketing basics that can lead to enjoying prosperity.

First, make sure you have a great product or service.  If your offering meets a market need (something that makes your client’s lives better) AND is above average quality, you get a ticket to play in the game of business.

Untitled.001

With a ticket into the ballpark, you are now positioned to begin attaching marketing efforts to your offering.

Note: Marketing poor products is a waste of your time and energy and your potential client’s time and energy. Marketing sticks to and works best when your offering fits the formula above.

Once you’ve proven the quality of your product, add marketing to it. One such marketing tenet I use to grow abundance and joy within my coaching business is to create or join a cause.

When you attach to a dream, a cause, a purpose bigger than your own business model, you play a bigger game than meeting a quarterly sales goal. When you marry what you do at work with a cause you make someone’s life better while communicating the principles and values of your organization. Making your principles and values visible makes you more attractive.

Here are three guidelines to follow when picking or creating your cause:

  • You must believe in the cause like you do a personal core value (lip service looks and acts like lip service while authenticity looks and acts like authenticity)
  • The cause has to be something you can rally behind (you have as much support for your cause as you do for a child, your partner, your most cherished friend)
  • You can sustain your cause (you are willing to consistently nurture your cause and its related needs  year-after-year)

The idea of having a cause-driven business strategy cannot be underestimated no matter your product.  In the United States consumers consistently support cause-related programs.

  • 78% of adults said they’d be more likely to buy a product or service associated with a cause they care about.
  • 66% said they would switch brands to support a cause.
  • 54% said they would pay more for a product that supported a cause they care about.

So what does creating or joining a cause actually look like? Great question. One example of creating a cause is our annual selection and distribution of two to three SoulSalt Awards: awards that I literally created for my own circle of influence. This year we are awarding: The Persistence Award, The Leadership Award, and The Reinvention Award.

An example of joining a cause would be what I did on May 18th. I believe we can improve our life/work experiences when we have healthy habits for movement, sleep and nutrition. So I not only competed in The Woman of Steel Triathlon, I’m wore rally bracelets during the race for five women who need the energy of movement and female support in their lives but can’t compete this year.

Now that you’ve read what has been stated above, what are you going to do about it? I’d love for you to put your thoughts into action and share them here or email them to me at lyn@soulsalt.com.

166027_10151673235553828_2095838178_n

 

In Memory of
Suzan Carol Johnson
June 7, 1954 – September 7, 2013

549954_10151350689367196_377483506_n

Sue C. Johnson
Born June 7th 1954 to George O. Skelton and Phyllis Stallings Skelton.
She graduated from Olympus High School in 1972 and attended Utah State and the University of Utah before she Married Eldred M. Johnson on August 1st 1973 in the Logan Temple. She was the Mother of Tonya Sue, Stephanie Ann, Kristin Marie, Jennifer Kay, and Mark Thomas. She also went back to school to pursue some of her interests in home assesement & later in interior design. She loved to travel, she loved to camp and hike, and especially loved her grandkids Quinn, Domminik, and Kyla. She was always enjoyable to be around before she died on the morning of September 7th, 2013. She will be greatly missed, but now is in no pain and with those that have gone ahead before her.

RIP Sue, you are always in our thoughts.

Lyn Gives Ellen DeGeneres A Run For Her Money!

spool headerI’m extending a standing ovation to Mary Miller of Spoollhardy Girl – a blogger who has documented her reinvention journey from empty nester to creator of oustanding quilted blankets.
Mary is a no nonsense Midwesterner who questioned the legitimacy of my “life coaching” when she first observed me shadowing a client last year at a sewing summit.
I don’t mind being questioned in this manner. There is merit in examining some of the practices used under the guise of “life coaching.” But, that’s the subject of a different blog.
Fast forward to today, and it is Mary’s humor and candor that has caught my eye now. I just read through two of her most recent post and I laughed out loud several times. Then I realized something about Mary: She’s a Bad Ass!

That’s what we call people who understand and then live in alignment with the following SoulSalt concepts:
A personal code of conduct – A.K.A. Be True
A personal set of strengths – A.K.A Be Strong
A personal system for managing focus – A.K.A. Be Focused.

Enjoy’s Mary’s style and honesty….Mary you’re on:

Be True. Be Strong. Be Focused. (Find Your Lula Recap Part II)

What are your core values? Do you know? Take a minute to think about it. Can you pick three words out of all the words in your language that sum up who you are? It’s not easy is it? Especially if you haven’t ever thought about it.  I hadn’t.

On day two of Lula we were introduced to Lyn Christian. Lyn was also at Sewing Summit with Amanda Herring last year. She stayed mostly in the back, videotaping Amanda’s talk. Amanda introduced her as her “life coach.” I have to be honest. I thought the term life coach was a little weird. Maybe it’s my no nonsense Midwestern upbringing. Maybe it was simply my own prejudices, but I didn’t really understand why a life would need coaching. I am pretty much a “just muddle through” kind of gal. Having somebody to coach one through one’s day seemed, well, self-indulgent.

When I woke up the morning of day two. I reminded myself of something I’d jotted down in my smash book in the midst of my near panic attack (thank you, Richard Nixon) the night before:

I knew there could be no room for my pre-conceived notions this day. I needed to stay open to everything that was given to me and assess later whether or not it was something I could use. To do anything else would mean that I was wasting everybody’s time especially my own.

The first thing we did that morning was some alignment exercises with Lyn’s partner, Susan McLaughlin. She showed us some really fantastic things that we can do on a daily basis to keep our bodies aligned. Proper alignment can help reduce inflammation in our joints and also reduces fatigue so we can work better, longer. I was stunned by the immediate results just a few short exercises produced. She also had us do a breathing exercise which felt like what I’ve imagined meditation to be like. I really liked how calm and focused this made me feel. I mean, really? Any chance to lie down on the floor and listen to my breathing, I’m in!

Now that we were all aligned and focused, we began working with Lyn. I’m not sure I have the vocabulary to describe Lyn in a way that will do her justice, and I didn’t take a single picture of her because from the moment she started talking, I was completely honed in on her message. This is no New Age, Kumbaya singing, false guru (did I mention I might have some pre-conceived notions?). This is a serious, accomplished business woman who has helped some really big hitters in the business world as well as the art world accomplish their goals in both their personal and their business lives. Chops, people. Lyn has chops. She is one of those rare people, you meet who are so comfortable in their own skin they exude a quiet confidence that makes you want to raise your game; to just be better. She also has a personal style that is so cool and so her very own and so uncontrived that, well, let’s just say Ellen Degeneres is jealous.

We began by going through stacks of cards with words on them finally narrowing them down to three words that were our top three values. Mine are Love, Gratitude, and Equilibrium.  Whenever we are faced with decisions that need to be made in our personal or our business life, we need to see if what we are being asked to do aligns with these core values. This exercise really helped me to recognize some very basic things that are so easy to lose sight of. I realized later that I had de-cluttered my inner workspace, just as I do in my sewing room before I start a new project, and I felt just as refreshed and ready to work after this inner de-cluttering as I do then.

Love: Nothing is possible without it.

Gratitude: An elixir, without which life is poisoned.

Equilibrium: Necessary for good function.

Our next session Lyn brought us through some very specific, solid things we can do to make our lives function better.  I have printed out my Today/Not Today and my “This Week/ Not This Week” sheets and have filled them in with sticky notes containing all the things I must accomplish if not today, then soon. This includes everything from the mundane (laundry) to the fun stuff (work on Illustrator) She talked to us about personal integrity; if you tell yourself you’re going to do something, you need to do it. This is something I have always struggled with. I’m pretty good at doing things I tell other people I will do, but I am always happy to give myself a pass on the things I tell myself I’m going to do. Lyn calls that “shoulding on yourself.” Hehehe get? “shoulding?” Get it?

I think the biggest realization I had after two days of listening to Lyn is that being a “just muddle through” kind of gal wasn’t really working for me. I was wasting too much time, giving myself too many free passes, and making excuses for why I wasn’t where I wanted to be creatively. Integrity is really important to me, and I was letting myself down in that area, big time.

So, I highly recommend taking a minute to contemplate what your core values are and ask yourself if you are living by them. It does a body good! And if you want to know more about the incredible Lyn Christian and her coaching company, Soul Salt (coolest name ever, don’t you think?), you can find her HERE and HERE and HERE! It’s all great information and it’s all free.

And one last word on Find Your Lula 2013, and then this will morph back into a quilting blog. I hope that I have painted an adequate picture of just how special this retreat was. People use the phrase “life changing” all the time and it annoys the heck out of me………..(wait for it)………….BUT. But Lula really has changed the game for me. Amanda told us she would help us find our wings and she did. She really, truly did. There are going to be more Lula retreats in the future and I hope if you’re reading this you will consider attending one. Amanda is a natural connector, and she has a magical way of connecting with people and then connecting them with others, strengthening everyone in the process. I am honored to call her my friend.

Weekly Action and Goal Setting Packages Now Available

Spirit works foundation

Once a year the VSIAS (Virginia Summer Institute on Addiction Studies) acknowledges an individual noted for providing significant and lasting contributions to the substance abuse treatment or prevention world. This year Jan Brown, founder and Executive Director of SpiritWorks Foundation received this distinction.

We would like to cheer Jan on as she continues to make strong, supportive waves in the arena of abuse treatment and prevention. This is one of the reasons my company SoulSalt Inc. recently partnered up with Jan and SpiritWorks to create two effective tools for her key audience.

One of these tools is geared toward assisting individuals who seek strong structure and support in making and executing weekly action plans: The Spiritworks Foundation Wellness Compass and Weekly Action Package

The other tool is focused on assisting individuals to have a proven and easy goal setting system at their finger-tips: The Spiritworks Foundation Goal Setting Package

We highly recommend both packages. They are effective, user-friendly, tried and true productivity tools. Special thanks to Jan for allowing us the opportunity to be part of this endeavor.

photo-22
Author’s Note:
In 2004 Jan asked me to be her coach, and later I became her mentor. I’ve been able to witness over time how diligent she has been in her own recovery process and how well she champions and advocates for others on a similar journey. I asked Jan to share her 10% solution for staying focused on a goal as part of Headtrip #12, The Perfect Trap. I wish Jan and SpiritWorks the best and many more years of success.

100 Loves Or 1,000 Likes

Untitled.001

2329357233_c3983a8dea_z

I was sitting in the office chatting with Jason Bangerter last week
and something he said is still ringing loud and clear in my mind.
In case you don’t know Jason, he’s a gifted futuristic thinker
and the co-founder of Struck Creative as well as Rentler.
Right after announcing, Rentler had passed the milestone of
half a million users, Jason remarked:

“…but here’s the deal… I’d rather have 100 people love Rentler than 1,000 people who like it. Only those who love your product have the  power to evangelize for you.”

That comment about “100 loves versus 1,000 likes” is what stuck…
If we don’t have something that the market loves,
we can’t build Monster Loyalty.

And there are at least three sure-fire ways to ensure that you deserve
and receive customer love and thus the power of Customer Evangelism:

1 – Offer a remarkable service or product that solves a client problem
2 – Offer a remarkable service or product that fills a client need
3 – Offer a remarkable service or product that fulfills a client’s wants and/or dreams.

Making good on any of the above is easier said than done…
So, let me share a story of  someone in my immediate circle who
has illustrated these sorts of remarkable service or product.

7718642_origLet’s start with Susan McLaughlin of Align, Integration and Movement. Susan performs a remarkable service for people who want to solve the problem of breaking free – and remaining free – from physical pain.

Susan’s career began as a personal quest to find freedom from pain. Injured in a car accident in her early twenties, she has persistently written her own passport to health and freedom.

Within her journey, Susan has been learning and practicing, taking classes, then taking more classes, and applying each piece of knowledge as she went.

She even earned two degrees – and today she blends a unique set of skills to her intuitive, professional prowess.

Here, you can find Susan’s philosophy (which is also a beautiful essay about her “Why”).

… And take a look at the stockpile of client testimonials that prove her remarkable status, here.

Lead with Your Values

“Customers can be interested in what products do, but they can only emotionally bond with companies who lead with what they believe in.”Jackie Huba, author of Monster Loyalty

“People don’t care what and how you do what you do. They care why you do what you do.”Simon Sinek TED talk: How Great Leaders Inspire

Let me translate: Customers only bond with emotionally driven businesses that share and live their core values.

So, forget about shouting and spouting about the features and benefits of your product or service. If you want to make sure you have a strong, loyal customer base for life you have to figure out what is most important to you and lead with these beliefs or values.

Who is doing just that sort of thing besides rock star Lady Gaga?

Good question.

Here are at least three answers to that question which illustrate three vantage points on how-to take the concept of Leading with your Values into application:

Jesse Dobbs is the owner of the Iris Piercing Studios. Among other things, he values making a significant difference in his client’s lives and in maintaining the highest quality of services and products he can. I recently took a field trip to his SLC location. As you watch this video can you identify other values that lead Jesse and the way his company does business?

http://lynchristian.com/client-centric/

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J7-D7cbOvGw&feature=c4-overview&list=UUz5cmwGtsK5VuCkNaytpQjA[/youtube]

Fraser Nelson is one of the smartest people I know. She also has one of the biggest hearts I’ve experienced. Her ambition and her ability to be honest are equally huge. This past year she gave a TEDX talk on the Brigham Young University Campus.  If she didn’t have my respect and a special place in my heart before, she does now. Watch her in action and see if you can guess what she values most?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qStovMGxQTw[/youtube]

Holly Tuckett from Flying Hat Productions attended our Monster Loyalty event this past June. While sitting in the audience listening to Jackie speak, she realized that she didn’t know her company’s core values and she saw the importance of knowing such. She called, got an appointment, discovered and refined her unique set. From that point on she’s been leading with these elements and success has followed. Here’s a small piece of her story.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NRhOLCo_olw[/youtube]

So now that you know this, I’d be remiss if I didn’t ask you:
Do you know your core values?
If so, are they leading your actions?
If you answered “no” to either question, hire us for an hour and we’ll get you on track to lead with your values so that success is even more apt to be following you.

 

The Power of Shared Symbols

Once upon a time I held the noble and endearing job of being a sixth-grade teacher. 

One of my students, we’ll call him Brady, definitely qualified as a 1% for Nike. Every backpack, hat and every visible piece of clothing he wore, bore the Nike Swoosh.

At one point I asked him what the symbol stood for and he was unable to say. However, this question led Brady through a relentless, self-imposed, research project to learn more about the emblem. We even persuaded the school to pay for the charges so he could interview someone in the marketing department up in Beaverton, OR.

In her book Monster Loyalty, Jackie Huba talks about this sort of drive and the connective power individuals sense when they embrace a brand’s symbol. For Brady, his embossed daily wardrobe and school gear helped him feel part of all things Nike.

Shared symbols are everywhere. This week I looked around my home and work and found a fistful of examples.

Here you can see Susan Yule, CEO of ConsultNet, sporting the company’s newest t-shirts.

photo (6)At SoulSalt Academy, coaches in training learn how to ask powerful coaching questions. This emblem supports one of the main points in a specific module.

don't ask why

Racer’s in X-terra events find temp tattoos in their SWAG at sign-in.  The intention is to foster unity among the athletes on the course during races.

photo (7)

And speaking of tattos, Jackie Huba committed her left ankle to the Pittsburg Steelers logo.

photo (10)

Now before you decide on the symbol your tribe will share, do your research. Experiment with logos, emblems, icons, and even mascots. Find out what attracts and unifies your client base.

You may even start to notice the symbols your 1%’s are sending you. The following is a collection of items that we have been given. We can’t say yet what role they will play in becoming a future SoulSalt Inc. shared symbol. However, those of you who know me can see these drawings are on to something. Even if all they do is capture and mirror back to us aspects that are near and dear to my heart such as: my collection of eyewear, my favorite belt buckle and of course, my love for wearing a tie now and then.

Untitled.001

SHINE like Cindy

medium_4620912546

“Happy People Are More Attractive”, stated a quote once taped on Stacy Soble’s refrigerator.  The notion was to constantly remind Stacy that beauty and grace run deeper than outward appearances. And it was this very quote that played in her mind as she looked for a seat during a session of Serious Business 2013 held in New Orleans. Now, as Editor-in-Chief of Salon Today, Soble was helping host the event and very much looking forward to Shawn Achor’s presentation on The Happiness Advantage.

Equally enthused about hearing Achor speak and already in her seat was SoulSalt client Cindy Feldman of Progressions Salon, Spa, and Store in Rockville, Maryland.  Cindy was attending as one of Salon Today’s Top 200 honorees.

As fate would have it, Stacey Soble picked her seat right next to Cindy Feldman and two of this planet’s bright spots met.  They struck up a conversation, exchanged business cards and took notes as Shawn provided five easy, daily steps to experiencing more happiness:

  • Upon waking each morning, jot down three things you are grateful for and pick three new items each day.
  • For two minutes each day, open a blank word document and write one meaningful experience you had that day. Include every detail.
  • Choose to do 15 minutes of a fun activity each day.
  • For two minutes simply watch your breath go in and out.
  • Choose someone in your life and send them praise by card or e-mail.

Later that evening when the session was over Soble noted that she was “extremely touched” by a sincere e-mail received from Cindy thanking her for making the event possible.

It was no surprise to me that Cindy immediately started practicing the daily steps for experiencing happiness on the very day she learned about them. It is also no surprise that she graciously and sincerely reached out and thanked Soble for her part in creating the event.

Cindy Feldman has taught me many things during my seven-year association with her. One of the high-lights being: Live your life with a low word to action ratio. Meaning – make sure that what you say is, what you do.

Thank you Cindy for your example and thank you for making my life brighter. You are ever out there shining like a diamond.

Author’s Note

To hear this story from Stacy Soble’s vantage point, flip to page 10 of salontoday.com March 2013. Soble’s Editor’s Note tipped me off as to how Cindy touched her life.

 

 

Finding Your Core Values System: A Starter Exercise

This simple yet important exercise will give you a taste of how to find your way to Be True.
You’ll have the beginning of the list of the most enlivened and enlarged parts of your work – and this is the beginning of the discovery of your core values system. Print the worksheet below and follow along with the audio!

Here is the worksheet you can click and print: Core Values Worksheet

 

Creating Customer Evangelism Tenet #1: Customer + Delta

You have to believe that when a customer tells you
what’s not working, that’s as much of a customer
evangelist as one who tells you what is working.
Because if they care enough to tell you what to fix,
they’re evangelists – evangelists are people who take
their own time to help you make your business better.

In this audio clip, Jackie Huba and her former business
partner Ben McConnell explain to Lyn Christian the value
of listening to your complaining customers and tell
what “passionate persuasion” is.

 

 

 

 

Supporting What’s Right and True

Recently I took a good look into a cause that spoke to my heart, sank deep into step with my personal philosophy on life and gave me a chance to do one of the things I do best – take a stand for the benefit of another.

You see, I have clients and associates who want to race in this year’s Woman of Steel Triathlon but can’t. I’m currently moving away from Sprint Triathlons toward another type of competition, so I know what they are missing. I want these ladies to somehow experience the excitement and energy involved in the Woman of Steel. Consequently, I’ve decided to swim, bike and run in their honor. Also, I believe I’ve found a way to bring the energy and stirring nature of the event into their individual and unique life voyages.

The Women of Steel Triathlon in Utah is sponsored by the Bank of American Fork. It was designed to celebrate the stories of amazing women who face life’s difficult challenges and situations with a positive approach by using physical fitness and training to help them overcome difficult circumstances.

Three of these incredible women are carving their way through recovery from breast cancer. The fourth is in recovery from having lost her best friend to this disease, and in the process, lost a huge part of herself as well.

The fifth connection has accepted that she is exiting life because of cancer and wants to finish on a positive note.

Here’s the plan:

Laurie Knaphus of Rally4Good has created a bundle of hand-made rally bracelets designed specifically to attract the benefits of healing and spiritual support.

Each woman within this small group will pick the bracelet they want to adopt from the bundle. On May 18th, I’ll wear the chosen five bracelets and take them with me through the power of this all- female event.

Once I cross the finish line, the bracelets will return home and be placed around the wrist of their respective recipient. My intention is that the lifeblood, the energy, the positivity, the joy, the movement and passion for life expressed that day will transfer from the event into the molecular structure of the jewelry and on to my friends. In effect these women will get a personal pep rally for as long as they wear the bracelet.

This is where you can come in. Join me for the Women of Steel Triathlon or sign up for any event of your picking or making. Choose a beneficiary, contact Laurie to obtain a Rally Bracelet(s) or create your own piece of jewelry and follow suit.

I believe what you and I can do is a small gesture in a strong direction that will have lasting effects in a world that needs to be nurtured over and over with what is right and true about human kind.