Sunday, July 28, 2013

Knee Surgery

I had knee surgery Friday (meniscus).  All went well.  Will be running within a few weeks.

The focus now is on healing so trying to be good and taking it easy.

Produce is on in a great way.  Zucchini, eggplant, beans, lettuce, leeks, onions, beets and a few tomatoes.  Basil and chives are prolific as are most other herbs.  Currants, gooseberries and blackberries are mostly done.  I love this time of year when we never need to buy any fresh vegetables.


As I said in my Amazon review of it - "This is a perfect primer for children who might be interested in entrepreneurship and business."


And the time management inspiration today is not here but at the blog.   They have lots of short inspirational entries (and I am even going to be contributing some to them).

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Zero to Two Billion - The Marketing and Branding Story Behind the Growth

My new book was just released - Zero to Two Billion - The Marketing and Branding Story Behind the Growth.

I had in the back of my mind that I might write another book someday but it was just not at the top of my priority list so was not getting done.

Then, I was approached by the fine folks from Hyperink Publishing who asked if they could put together a book based on some of my blog entries - both the ones on this blog and the ones on other blogs that I have "guest" posted on.

They did most of the work.  They organized it.  Did a bit of editing.  And compiled it all. 

I am a marketer at heart so most of the chapters are about marketing.  Because each chapter is a single blog entry, this is a book that does not need to be read from cover to cover.  It can be read a little at a time. 

I like succinctness so most chapters are short (like 400-500 words).  My view is that adds to the ease of reading.  I know it adds to the writing challenge.  The true quest is for simplicity and clarity but depth.

I look forward to your feedback.

I self published my last book - Time Leadership - Lessons from a CEO - Using the Secrets of Leadership for Time Management.  It will be interesting to see the difference between self published and a publisher published book.

This book is only available for now as an Ebook.  I will be doing a paper version within 6 weeks.  For that, I will include quotes from readers about the book.  If you you would like to have your name in print and would like to provide a quote for consideration - email me at jimestill at gmail.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

How to Sell Without Being a Jerk

I had dinner tonight with speaker and author John Klymshyn.  Good guy.

I loved his business card.  It was a fold out one (usually I hate because they take too much space).  The inside had a great list  he calls  Every Day:

1. Be kind to someone.
2 - Negotiate as if you do not need the Deal.
3 - Sweat (not hard in the weather but not sure that is what he means)
4 - Meditate/Pray/Be Silent
5 - Laugh Loudly
6 - Inspire Someone (hence this blog)
7 - Read for one Hour (perhaps read Zero to Two Billion)
8 - Do something Creative
9 - Save Money
10 - Give something away

He has written a few books and gave me one - How to Sell Without Being a Jerk - The Foolproof Approach to the World's Second Oldest Profession.  Slightly concerned that he chose to give me that one and not one of his others.  I wonder what he was thinking...

It is a classic "Sales" book and at the same time it is not.

He reminds us of the age old classics in sales like "Feel, Felt, Found".  (I know how you feel, many other customers felt the same way but what they found was by buying our product they save gazillions of dollars).  And using open ended questions.  

At the same time, he rejects all the sliminess that sometimes is associated with sales.  I know I cannot sell anything I do not believe in nor can I sell to someone who does not need what I am selling.

One phrase John uses is "Moving Conversations Forward".  I think he even trademarked it.  The gist of the message is to keep things moving forward.  He reminds us that sales is a process and many times a long an many touch process.

Throughout the book were amusing stories of sales disasters.

Great book.  Highly recommended.  It must be good - we are going to use it for one of our books in our Sales Book Club.

Monday, July 08, 2013

Success Habits

I have long believed that habits are the easy way to success (or failure).  So I constantly look at my habits.

One success habit I have is bringing my lunch on most days.

Today it is halibut (that I caught in British Columbia), squash (the last one from last year), lettuce and potato salad.  The herbs used were chervil, basil, onion tops and chives - all from the garden.  The only part of the lunch I did not grow or catch was an egg and a bit of mustard to make the mayonnaise.

I never thought I was a foodie but I think I am.

Reasons why the "bring your lunch" success habit is a success habit include:

1 - I eat healthier with normal portion sizes.

2 - Saves $.  Does not seem like much but it adds up over time.    Even $10/day would be $2,000/year. 

3 - Saves time.  I figure even eating very close to work would cost an extra 20-30 minutes so this habit saves me a full week plus in time over a year.  But the doubters will say but it takes time to make lunch.  Not really - I always take left overs from the night before and it takes no more time to make a bit more of everything.

4 - Gives some informal time with co-workers.  One of my best leverages is to have staff who are productive.  Lunch is an informal time where interaction occurs.  

And a plug for one of the businesses Canrock has funded.   SEO Pledge gets people/products/companies on the first page of Google or gets them off if that is a problem.  Please email me if you know of any business that could use their services and I will make the introduction.

SEO Pledge believes in 100% utilization of resources.  One way a services business can do this is by working on products with any "free" time where they do not have client work to do.  It also allows them to experiment so the work they do for other clients is even better.

So they have a couple of new sites up.  Kinds of and Types of.

Friday, July 05, 2013

Financing our Foodshed

 It was the 4th of July here.  I suppose it was in Canada too but it just had no meaning there. 

But being Canadian, I prefer to celebrate Victoria Day so some pictures of my granddaughter, Victoria.  And one with Josh kissing his sister.

I was recently in North Carolina visiting my brother, Lyle.  He travels in an eclectic eco crowd.  While there, I met a friend who stopped by his house - Carol Peppe Hewitt who had just written a book - Financing Our Foodshed - Growing Local Food with Slow Money.

Slow money is a bit of a takeoff on slow food.  In this case, the idea is to loan money and get a small return (which means it grows slowly).

It is similar to Lyle's books (same publisher too) in that it is a story of local people.  In this case, it is the story of people who loan small amounts of money to people to allow them to start businesses.  The businesses mostly revolve around food - mostly the preparation of it.  For example, one food entrepreneur wanted a loan to winterize a building so food production (Jams, Jelly and winter produc like kale and sweet potatoes etc) could be sold year around.  

There are the lenders who are paid a modest (like 2%) interest.  Their motivation is to give something back and to help their community.  And the borrower who want to start or expand a small business.  What makes this work is the volunteerism in vetting the deals combined with the community that supports the companies (as customers and more).

This program reminds me of Kiva but more local.  In the case of North Carolina slow money, it is  less automated and more personal.  With Kiva, the lenders make no interest but the organizations that do the lending, collecting and accounting make fees and interest and unfortunately, in many cases, those are too high and make the money expensive.

There is lots more information on the North Carolina program at  

Good book.  I liked the stories.  Probably partly of interest to me since I know some of the people involved including my brother who has a prominent part.


Sort of related but not...

One interest I have in general is vegetable gardening (even though my garden has a lot of weeds now so you would think I had little interest and for that matter, I have less interest in it when it has weeds).  

I have long thought that more people should grow their own food.  I think it builds an appreciation of food.  And the freshness cannot be beat so I think it is healthier.  Most people who garden can do it organically since they are not trying to get 110% yield and can accept a few blemishes.

I think being outside and the minor amount of exercise involved is also good for people.  As is the connection with the land.

I think it would be great to start a movement where people are encouraged to garden and more people did garden.