Founded in 2010, Classy Career Girl® is now one of Forbes 35 Most Influential Career Sites and a leading destination for ambitious women,.
Meaningful content at the intersection of work, dreams and everyday life. Classy Career Girl helps women find jobs and start businesses. Forbes Top 35 Most Influential Career Site and E-Learning Platform for ambitious women.
In the business world, you are the architect of your life and destiny or let’s say, the master of your fate. There are no limitations to the things you can achieve. They key is learning the rules of the game and playing your cards right. To begin with, let’s learn the most important business success secrets you should know.
1. Learn How to Make Money
This sounds obvious, but making money for your business is a major challenge to most people. It is important that we understand that the market pays depending on your performance. If you expect excellent rewards, then you have to focus on offering the best in your business field. Otherwise, average rewards, frustrations, and failure will be part of you. Be vigilant and aggressive to understand the key competencies and skills needed to become an expert in your niche. With these, you can build your business and implement effective entrepreneurial strategies every single day.
2. Get Around The Right People
It is worth noting that 80 percent of your success in life depends on personal and business relationships. The same trend applies when it comes to entrepreneurship. Any successful businessman will tell you there will be someone at every turning point in your life, to either help or hinder you achieve. It is therefore important that you build and maintain a network of productive relationships throughout your life. If you want to succeed, associate with positive and ambitious people. As much as they keep you motivated to achieve your goals, they can potentially bring valuable clients and partnerships to your business.
Many people will offer you tips for successful entrepreneurship, but these two are must-have traits to ensure your business succeeds. Additionally, we have compiled a list of four prominent entrepreneurs that should inspire you. From Oprah to Bill Gates, we’re sharing their success stories and real-life experiences to motivate you on your entrepreneurial journey.
Follow The Example of These 4 Prominent Entrepreneurs to Become Successful
1. Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey has one of the most-inspiring rags to riches story. Oprah’s current net worth is over $3 billion, placing her as the richest African American and arguably, topping the list of most influential women in the world. Oprah was born in a very humble background where she grew up in abject poverty. Considering the rough upbringing of a single mother who worked as a house help, Oprah faced many challenges including sexual abuse throughout her school life. However, this did not bar her from achieving her dreams. Her career began at a local black radio station where Oprah impressed the station managers with her passion and oration. Later, Oprah landed better gigs in leading radio stations and eventually on TV. Through her passion and aspirations, she launched the widely-known Oprah Winfrey Show. Fellow entrepreneurs, PERSISTENCE is the key. Do not give up.
2. Steve Jobs
It is almost impossible to create a list of the most famous entrepreneurs without featuring Steve Jobs. Due to financial burdens, Steve dropped out of college but continued with audit classes unofficially. He later formed Apple Computer Company, the tech-giant considered the “grandfather of the digital revolution.” He changed the electronics industry significantly, and his influence will be felt forever by the coming generations. Jobs passed away with a net worth of over $8.3 billion.
Today, one of the biggest technology moguls of the century, with commitment and unrelenting spirit to his vision, Steve Jobs was undoubtedly an all-time entrepreneurial star. With his contribution on how we can leverage technology in marketing and businesses, Jobs’ inventions have been a real game-changer.
[RELATED: 3 of The Most Inspiring Women in Business]
3. Andrew Carnegie
Andrew Carnegie, among other examples, serves as an inspiring figure in entrepreneurship. Carnegie had a tough childhood life where he worked in factories for a living. It was rough – constant hunger was the order of the days. However, Carnegie was brilliant enough to work his way up, where he ended as a superintendent in Pennsylvania Railroad Company. He used his earnings to create several businesses, including the Carnegie Steel Mill.
Being one of the richest people in America, Carnegie proved to be a class act illustration of generosity. He believed that anyone who dies rich dies disgraced and therefore, ended up donating almost all his wealth to charitable organizations and foundations including educational institutions and libraries across the United States.
4. Bill Gates
Bill Gates is among the most successful entrepreneurs of our age. Gates net worth is estimated to be over $80 billion. He has been crowned world’s richest man for 17 of the past 23 years, the founder of the world’s largest computing company, Microsoft, and recognized as a leading figure when defining computer revolution. Gates developed a great interest in programming at a very tender age; spending all the time creating computer programs in school. He later created Microsoft and led a developer’s team in creating the Windows Operating System-which is increasingly popular.
Gates, just like other famous entrepreneurs, is known for his philanthropic activities which include donations to charitable organizations as well as scientific endeavors. He also founded a philanthropic foundation that aims to reduce poverty, enhance health care, improve education opportunities and provide technological access worldwide.
Having internalized the success stories of some of the most successful entrepreneurs, it’s time to place yourself on the billionaire roadmap. Follow the entrepreneurship strategies above and influence the lives of people positively – it’s the real measure of success.
I’m not going to suggest you work more hours, so keep reading! There are ways to boost productivity without clocking in extra time. We are all different, so check out the following tips and test them to see what works best for you.
5 Ways to Be More Productive at Work without Working Overtime
1. Don’t Multi-Task
Are you a master multi-tasker? It might not be a good thing. Jumping from one thing to the next may be necessary at times, but it’s not good for productivity. When our brains keep changing focus, it can slow down and unfortunately is more prone to error. So, not only are you working slower, you then spend more time fixing mistakes.
Try instead to monotask. Focus on one thing at a time. If it helps, establish blocks of time and mark them on your calendar. Assign the time to certain projects and avoid interruptions or distractions to maximize your productivity. This works well for high-level projects that may require a lot of focus and attention. Save smaller and less intensive tasks for times when interruptions are inevitable.
2. Take Breaks
In between those scheduled blocks of working time, take a break. Get up from your desk/couch/cubicle and take a walk. This provides you with an opportunity to step away from your work for a moment and take a breather. If you can’t leave work behind, use the time as a brainstorm session for an upcoming marketing campaign or think about potential pros and cons of a new product concept. Either way, take the time to get up and move.
Taking multiple, short walking breaks also has the potential to better your mood, help you stay alert and combat the negative health issues associated with sitting for extended periods of time.
3. Organize and Prioritize
Take control of your work and increase your productivity by staying organized. Create and implement a clear organizational system. Whether that be an inbox/outbox, urgent, non-urgent, etc. Staying organized will help you know what projects are on your plate and can help you prioritize those items to be the most effective.
Staying organized can also help you focus according to one study, as having too many things in your field of vision can be distracting for your brain.
Not sure how to get started? Check out these tips from HGTV.
4. Create a Workspace Conducive to Productivity
Along with organization, try to create a working space that’s conducive to work. Does your desk look like a disaster zone? Stage a major overhaul to clear things out. Get rid of everything that doesn’t serve a purpose and file the rest away for reference. Place a few tasteful décor times in your workspace and don’t be afraid to add a plant or two (not only do they add a bit of pretty to your space, they can also reduce your stress levels).
Also, pay close attention to lighting (natural light is best) in your space. Daylight has been shown to help workers be more well-rested, which translates to more energy to get things done during working hours. In addition to lighting, try to choose lighter furniture pieces to keep your space from becoming too dark.
5. Find What Works for You & Take it One Step at a Time
If you find yourself overwhelmed and struggling to check all the to-do’s off your list, give just one of the above ideas a try. You might be surprised to know that a few adjustments can make all the difference in your workday productivity, giving you the extra time you need to accomplish all your tasks.
Ever wanted to build your audience online? That’s what today’s episode is all about!! Today we are kicking off a Build Your Tribe Challenge in the Classy Career Girl Network Facebook group and I thought it would be fun to release a podcast all about building your audience.
How to Build Your Audience
Building an audience is how I started 8 years ago. I spent a year building my audience before I ever even sold anything just by blogging back in 2011. By the time I created a product, I had an audience to sell to. Same with the podcast that I now do twice a week, this is just to build an audience and I put so much effort into it because I know how important it was to have built up that audience with my blog posts. Now I know how important audio and podcasts are to growing an audience these days. You can really start with written content, audio content or video content. Start with whatever is most comfortable for you. There’s no right or wrong thing to start with when building your audience. The key is to just do it. I‘m going to teach you a lot today about how you can get started or grow your current audience.
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So if you don’t know where to start with your business, building your audience is a great place to start! I’m going to teach you about the things I have learned about building an audience today. There’s a lot!
Relocating for a job is a big deal. While at first, it may seem like an easy process, you need to carefully evaluate all the pros and cons of moving. Whether its 50 miles, a thousand miles, or more, uprooting your life to start in a new city can be a great opportunity. But it comes with a lot of baggage. Here are 6 things to consider before you relocate for a job.
6 Questions You Need to Consider Before You Relocate for a Job
1. How does the cost of living compare to your current town or city?
Although your job may offer you a relocation package that helps with moving costs and maybe even a significant raise for your new position, if you’re moving to an area with a significantly higher cost of living, the extra cash may not be enough. If you’re moving from a small town to a big city, you’ll want to find out exactly how far your new salary will go. Research the cost of living and what your new salary offer is equivalent to in your current town.
2. How much will it cost for you to move?
Even if your job is providing you with moving and relocation assistance, it may not cover the entire cost of moving. If you’re moving far away, consider what you’ll bring with you and whether or not it makes sense to haul a large load of furniture and belongings across the country. If you’re renting your home, you’ll need to find out how much it costs to break your lease, if applicable. If you own your home, you’ll need to find out how quickly you can sell your house. And if you can’t sell your house, is renting your house an option? How long will it take to find and approve a tenant? Aside from the cost of moving your things and housing concerns, think about your immediate needs when you arrive at your new location. Is the climate the same as your current town, or will you need an entirely new wardrobe? Is your new city walkable, or will you need to purchase a car? Your list of costs will depend on a variety of factors. Be honest with yourself and make a list of all the things you’ll need in your new home.
3. How does this relocation impact your career?
When considering a big relocation for a job, you need to think about how it will shape your future. Are you receiving a big promotion, or are you changing careers? If you’re moving to a much smaller city, what will you do if you lose your new job? Think about the opportunities that will be available to you in your new location if the job you relocate for doesn’t work out.
[RELATED: 5 Things to Consider When Moving For Work]
4. If you have a family, how will this move change their lives?
Moving your entire family, especially if you have children or other dependents, can be quite the challenge. If you have children who are in school, they’ll need to change schools and make new friends. Depending on how long they’ve been in their current school district, this may be an upsetting change to their routine. If your children need to change school districts, it’s best if you can plan the move around the start of the school year. This way, it will be easier to adjust.
5. What will you do for the holidays?
Even if you don’t have kids or are single, you may spend time with family and friends during the holidays. How will that change in your new location? For far away moves, it may be logistically and financially difficult for you to come home for the holidays. Think about how you’ll feel about this when considering your move.
6. How will this move change you?
Be very honest about your reasons for moving far away. Do you believe this move will help you in your personal development and growth? If this move will greatly improve your current quality of life and provide you with better opportunities in the future, then it’s probably a wise choice.
No matter what you choose, make sure you’ve carefully considered all aspects of your move. There’s bound to be surprises and hiccups along the way, but if your reason for moving is sound, then relax and enjoy the journey.
Has fear ever held you back? Made you afraid to take one step further? Today I am going to share my story of how I got over my fears and how you can too.
How to Turn Fear into Action
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3 Questions to Ask Yourself To Overcome Fear
To get over these fears, the very first thing I always do is to let it go and stop TRYING to be in control. Then, I ask myself these three questions.
What is the worst thing that can happen if I go after my goals?
What is the best thing that can happen if I go after my goals?
I have a special guest training for you today! I get so many questions about whether Facebook ads work and how to get started using them. Yes, they work and today you get to hear from our Facebook ads specialist at Classy Career Girl. He’s one of the smartest guys I know and he’s also my husband. So enjoy learning the secrets behind our Facebook ad strategy at Classy Career Girl. Take it away John!
Behind the Scenes of Our Facebook Ad Strategy
We are looking for a long-term relationship. Don’t be in it for the quick sale. Build rapport and give value. You can’t go directly to the sale. It doesn’t work.
The most important thing about setting your advertising budget is to set a budget. This will take away the fear factor of throwing money at your ads without a good strategy. It will also make sure you stop once you hit your budget.
The Top 10 Webinar Mistakes to Avoid
1. Promoting Only One Week in Advance and Not Enough
Ovеr 25 реrсеnt оf соmраniеѕ ѕеnd оut thе first еmаilѕ inviting contacts tо wеbinаrѕ at lеаѕt 15 dауѕ bеfоrе the event. If you ѕtаrt уоur promotion campaign twо full weeks in advance, уоu hаvе a lаrgеr window tо build аttеndаnсе numbеrѕ and remind аttеndееѕ.
The art of driving webinar registration is all about catching people at a moment of receptivity with a message that resonates with them. Extending webinar promotions beyond a week and delivering multiple messages and email types will increase your chance of successfully hitting that moment of receptivity.
2. Not Respecting The Audience’s Time
People start to lose interest after an hour. Sometimes your audience will be using their lunch period to watch your webinar.
People are busy. If you market your webinar at an hour, keep it at an hour. If you market your webinar masterclass at 2 hours, keep it at 2 hours.
3. Using a Double Opt-In Feature
I get the double opt-in argument. And some email providers strongly encourage using the double opt-in as a confirmation of not spamming. However, people are busy and will forget to confirm subscription. If it makes sense for your business and your email provider allows you to turn off the double opt-in feature, do so.
4. Not Providing an Add To Calendar Tool
If you don’t provide a quick and easy way to put your webinar on their business calendar, chances are good that your prospects will double-book or miss your event.
Calendaring tools dramatically improve registration-to attendee conversion rates. Embed a calendar tool on every landing page, allowing registrants to place your webinars on their business calendars. Include login details in the information that goes to the calendar.
[RELATED: How to Save Facebook Live Videos for Webinars]
5. Not Visually Appealing and Quite Boring
Make your webinar visually appealing! Keep the attention of your audience by not speaking too long on any one talking point.
6. Not Engaging With Your Audience
Bring your audience into the presentation. It’s not a lecture. It should more or less be a discussion.
7. Too Much Text
Too much text is hard on the eyes and gets really boring. If your audience could just read whatever valuable information it is you have to share, they would just do it on their own time.8. Letting People Know There’s a Replay
Don’t let people know there’s a replay off the bat. By doing so, you are training people to watch the replay. You want your registrants to attend live.
9. Mostly Selling and Not Providing Enough Useful Content
No one wants to be sold to. Focus on value Lead with value and the sales will come.
10. Not Analyzing The Data
Reflect on the numbers. Let me repeat. Look back at your numbers! See what needs improvement so you won’t make the same mistakes the next time around.
I felt like I had hit rock bottom. In efforts to curb my anxiety, I tried to meditate by focusing on my breathing. The sounds of insistent honking and traffic from outside my hotel window in Jaipur, India seemed to resemble the inner turmoil I was facing. I was trying to decide if it was time to throw in the towel and end my dream of being a solopreneur.
If we go back in time, 2015 to be exact, I used to be a corporate drone. I was doing the normal 8-5, Monday through Friday, and was bored out of my mind. I felt like just another identification number among many other robots chained to their cubicles.
I remember “multitasking” while on a conference call (we all know that means “not actually listening”) and looking at travel blogs. I came across the term “digital nomad,” which means you can work all over the world with a laptop in hand and accessible Wifi. Something inside me clicked: this is the lifestyle I wanted.
I’m not sure what came over me, but I began dedicating all waking hours to this dream of becoming a digital nomad. The next eight months were spent teaching myself a skill that I could earn money with while traveling. I chose to build websites and do affiliate marketing. When I wasn’t working my job, or learning web dev things, I was majorly downsizing. My goal was to get rid of everything that couldn’t fit into my fit into my 40L backpack.
I would schedule appointments for friends to come and raid my closet. The juicer I never used went on Craiglist, my bed went to Goodwill, and my fat cat Henry moved in with my sister. It was hard to part with all these material items, especially my kitty, but it was also liberating. I didn’t have things weighing me down anymore. It was almost like a lifestyle cleanse.
The Solopreneur Slump and How to Make a Comeback
On March 21st, 2016, I quit my job and boarded a one-way flight. I will always remember the date because of the numbers: 3-2-1. The next year was spent hopping from one amazing city to the next.
Here are just a few of the things I did:
Hiked through the Scottish Highlands while listening to Scottish folklore
Attended Oktoberfest in Munich wearing a dirndl
Celebrated Holi Festival in India
Rode a camel through the Arabian desert
Stayed in a 15th century Tudor home in Salisbury, UK
Saw Lake Bled in Slovenia
Bathed in the public baths in Budapest
Relaxed in the Blue Lagoon in Iceland
Saw the Book of Kells in Dublin
Sat on the Princess Diana bench in front of the Taj Mahal
In each of the 20 countries I went to, I learned something different about myself. I learned how to be completely independent and how to gauge people quickly. Most importantly, I gained confidence. Being on your own and recognizing that you can fulfill your dream was the most empowering experience for myself.
Back to the Hot Mess Express
Let’s jump back to that anxious woman in India. I was a nervous wreck. The problem was the road was beginning to wear on me. To most people, it sounds like a continuous vacation. In reality, it’s hard work. You’re constantly trying to find your way navigationally and emotionally. On top of trying to build a business, I wasn’t juggling all of the stressors very well.
My business was barely staying afloat, mostly by my own doing. It’s difficult to keep focused when the Taj Mahal or the Sheikh Zayed Mosque are just waiting to be explored. My savings were dwindling and I was lacking a focus.
The straw that broke the camel’s back was when I got a call from my mother, letting me know that my grandmother had passed away. This was the beginning of my nervous breakdown and what ultimately was the deciding factor for me to go home and get my head on straight. I needed stability, time with my family to grieve, and to really think about what I wanted in life.
The Digital Nomad Back in Iowa
My journey back to my home in Iowa was a grueling 26 hours. I landed just in time to run home to my parents’ house (I’m technically homeless since I got rid of everything), shower, and put on a black dress for my grandma’s funeral.
The next few hours were surreal; I’m sure it was a combination of jet lag, grief, and my already high state of anxiety. My friends and family would approach me and ask about my adventures. I’d give them what I call the “elevator speech.” It’s my quick story of what I’m doing, where I’ve been, my favorite places, etc. Answering the usual questions people ask you.
The one question that I wasn’t prepared for was – “What are you going to do next?” I skirted around this question multiple times. I had no idea what I was going to do next. In my mind, I had two options.
Option 1 – Go back to the corporate world. I kind of missed having a steady paycheck, a home to call my own, and reliable benefits (like health insurance). But, I knew that I quit that life for a reason. How would I be happy going back to that life, especially when I had experienced so much freedom?
Option 2 – Keep building my business and continue down the road of uncertainty of being a digital nomad. This was a dream I had worked so hard to accomplish, why wasn’t I happy? I questioned if it was something I would be able to continue.
[RELATED: Sit Up Straight and Relax! Productivity Tips for Digital Nomads]
Ding Dong, It’s Decision Knocking
Having a Type A personality makes uncertainty and a lack of a plan difficult to handle. The first time in my life I had to look myself in the mirror and ask – “Colleen, what do you want to do with your life?” Every time I asked myself this incredibly difficult question, something deep down inside me told me not to give up. This voice was saying, “Maybe this is when most entrepreneurs give up. If you keep pushing, for just a little bit longer, you can find success.”
One day, I was watching an entrepreneurial Ted Talk and I had a moment of clarity. Right now, all I was doing was freelancing. I needed to have a direction and a mission with my business, instead of picking up odd jobs.
What I was missing was my purpose.
I started networking with other small business owners and would ask them about the difficulties they had with their websites. This is how I found my differentiator as a company. Most businesses complained about how their websites were so expensive, or it was difficult for them to manage on their own. Business owners are self-sufficient, they want to be able to edit their website on their own. With this new direction, my business began to grow.
My client base grew through word of mouth and I had more stability by gaining more customers and thus making more money. To manage the workload, I began to travel slower. Instead of spending a week or two in a city, I’d spend a couple months. This would allow me to focus, but still be able to travel and pursue my passion for traveling.
I didn’t have to give up my dream, I just needed to refocus my goals. The path of a solopreneur can be a struggle but remember no matter how long and lonely the hike is, there is a beautiful view at the summit.
I am so excited that starting this month, we are releasing mini-podcast episodes on Mondays answering your questions!! Our first question is all about what systems and online tools I use for organizing myself as a leader. So let’s dive into our very first mini-podcast episode!
The Top 8 Online Tools I Use as a Leader
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Recently my clients have been asking a lot of questions about how to manage their time. Most of them are working full-time while still searching for a job on the side. It can be very stressful and overwhelming to do it all!
I know I have been there. Even if you are in a career you love, you still need to be as productive as possible so you can focus on the most important items that will help you lead your team effectively. It’s easy to get off track and distracted. Reading email all day is not productive. Here’s how I stay productive as a leader.
#AskAnna Question from Pauletha:
What systems do you use for organizing yourself as a leader (i.e. projects, staff/board meetings, recruiting, training leaders, etc.)?
1. Asana: projects my to-do list and team communication instead of email, meeting minutes
2. Trello: operations manual
3. 90-day planner: Sunday night planning
4. Infusionsoft: organizing our marketing and sales funnels
5. Zoom: team meetings
6. FB group: communicating with team
7. Dropbox: storing and saving files
8. Google drive and google calendar, email
What tools do you use as a leader? I’d love to know!
You may also like these episodes:When To Invest in a Mastermind, Coaching or Course 50 Daily Habits of Highly Successful People
Thanks for listening to the Classy Career Girl podcast! If you enjoyed this episode, please leave us a review on iTunes. Thank you!
After years of study, you can ruin your career in one moment.
Harsh words, I know, but unfortunately the truth.
Success in the business world requires much more than the facts your business degree taught you. I know you’re prepared to work in challenging economic environments and take business risks. Perhaps you’re set to start at the bottom and work your way all the way to the top.
But are you ready to work with one of the most unpredictable factors in the business world?
People determine whether your next project, business deal or meeting goes well. They’re the partners that have to trust you, the experts you need to borrow money from and the employers who will hopefully give you a job.
But they’ll only do it if you act right. How skilled are you in business etiquette?
This is why knowledge about etiquette and body language is just as important as the certificate hanging on your wall.
Can you use your eyes to get people to trust you? Look them straight in the eye to show confidence. But don’t overdo it. You don’t want your boss to think you’re arrogant.
[RELATED: The Three Crucial Steps of Business Etiquette]
Can you keep up a conversation during a business dinner? Don’t cross your arms! People will think you don’t want to associate with them. This is not conducive to future business deals.
And don’t forget facial expressions! Don’t say you agree while your eyes show you don’t. Don’t scowl at someone else’s comments. Neither of these will spark trust from others. And being in a bad mood is never enough reason to even frown.
In business, your every act and word will determine future success. Can you show positivity, trustworthiness, and confidence at all times?
Note bad habits and make some adjustments. Your skill at business etiquette may become more valuable than the degree you worked so hard for.
15 Business Etiquette and Body Language Blunders