Flat Out Scary: Mixing Business With Superstition

10 08 2012

Mixing business with superstitionA few days ago, I heard something that chilled me. To. The. Bone.

A new acquaintance complimented me on my 4-wheeled transport. Do you have goosebumps yet? No? Good, because that’s not the scary part.

I am fiercely proud of my car – not because it’s beautiful (it is), but because I worked so hard to make that purchase possible. Where one person sees a hunk of steel on wheels, I see restructuring MY life to give my BUSINESS life – long hours of mind-cramping design sessions, intense dedication to exceeding expectations, balancing precariously on the diplomatic highwire, sweating bullets over deadlines, epic mental battles with self-doubt, and more all-nighters than you can shake a stick at.

I shared an abbreviated version of this with the complimenting party, and she responded with:

“Oh, boy… you’re in trouble. It’s when you care about something that bad things happen. I couldn’t care less about my car – see? [gesturing grandly at a rusted out minivan] – and nothing’s happened to it.”

If the hair isn’t crawling on the back of your neck, check yourself for a pulse.

This kind of superstitious negativity is the antichrist of entrepreneurship (and, in my opinion, humanity). This is the reason – read: excuse – to hunker below sub-mediocrity. But if you don’t care about your business, who will?

As an entrepreneur, YOU DON’T DO mediocrity.

Contrary to hoodoo-voodoo beliefs, rational pride (emphasis on “rational”) in your achievements is NOT the beginning of the end. It’s a crucial element of business growth.  If you quake with each new customer, cringe at each dollar earned, and flatline every time you make a business conquest, your company – and you – will be lucky to survive a week.

I challenge you to place rational value in the things you’ve earned – whether it be money, success, fame, or the positive perks that result from them. You worked hard for these. They are motivators, and motivators are what give us drive to achieve, and continue achieving, greatness.

What are your thoughts regarding mixing business with superstition?

Next Blog: DMT Artistry’s business rebranding took a turn for the exciting, as I’ve just moved to my new office. For now, it’s a playground of cardboard boxes and construction materials, but it’s given me new incentive to put my logo on the renovation fast-track. I’ll be back in another 2 weeks with the next installment of The DMT Idea Board. Thanks for reading!

“I had only one superstition. I made sure to touch all the bases when I hit a home run.”  ~Babe Ruth

Dawn M. Tomczyk-Bhajan  |  DMT Artistry, LLC   |  www.DMTArtistry.com

All content Copyright © 2012 DMT Artistry, LLC, unless otherwise noted. All Rights Reserved.





How to Brand a Business: A LIVE Demonstration

14 03 2012

Buckle up... I'm about to show you How to Brand Your BusinessToday marks the beginning of something unexpected. Something exhilarating. Something BUSINESS-changing.

For over two years now, I’ve been working with entrepreneurs and business owners who are no longer satisfied with half-hearted business and mediocre marketing. They’ve trained their sights on extraordinary success, and their questions and ideas have been the ongoing inspiration for this blogsite.

But starting today, rather than simply TELL you how to re-brand your business into something remarkable, I’m going to SHOW you how to do it.

DMT Artistry, LLC has long been overdue for a brand evolution. We are no longer an infant company testing the waters. Our growth has exceeded expectation. *pat on back*  But the time for admiring my handiwork-to-date has passed.

Now it’s time to give that growth direction.

Over the coming year, I’m going to take you through the elements of branding / re-branding your business, starting from the ground up, and using DMT Artistry, LLC as a living, breathing example. I’ll walk you through absolutely everything – from the importance of a Mission Statement, to the re-design of a logo, to the structure of pricing, to social networking with purpose, to re-making an online presence, to how you present yourself, right down to the miniscule minutia that create consistent and memorable marketing.

Learn from my successes – and my mistakes. There’s no point in tripping over the same stumbling block twice.

If you’re just launching your business, way to be in the right place at the right time! This demonstration is as much for the new entrepreneur, as it is for the rejuvenating business.

And I expect to benefit from this adventure as much as you do. I can hardly be an inspiration and a resource if my own business is stagnating.

Since I’ll be blogging about my experience in what amounts to “real-time”, I invite you to do your own re-branding right along with me. Feel free to comment and ask questions as we go. This will be YOUR resource. Help me make it what you need it to be.

This weekly blog series is going to combine the best of adventure and hard work, fun and professionalism, success and turning “oops” into “a-ha!”

So, if you’re ready to ride…

“Buckle up, Buttercup.”  ~Belinda Anderson

Next week:  “Ground Zero: The Perfect Mission Statement”

Dawn M. Tomczyk-Bhajan  |  DMT Artistry, LLC   |  www.DMTArtistry.com

All content Copyright © 2012 DMT Artistry, LLC, unless otherwise noted. All Rights Reserved.





Ode to Self-Employment

17 06 2011

Self-employment is remarkably revealingOperating your own business is about as revealing as traipsing through the mall in your skivvies.

People learn – YOU learn – an uncannily large amount about who you are by the way you handle self-employment. You can clothe your business in any perception you care to create, but when it comes down to the nuts and bolts of how you offer and follow through with your service, the truth will out!

Because the reality of it is that, for every 2 hour lunch break, mid-week vacation or impulse purchase, self-employment demands double overtime to make up for missed time and opportunity. How you do – or don’t – embrace that responsibility, speaks volumes about your devotion to self-employed success.

The “high-schooler-on-spring-break-in-Cancun” style of self-management results from a critical failure to recognize this, and that’s why being self-employed purely for the sake of being self-employed is a recipe for disaster!

But when managed correctly, there’s so much to love about being “master of your own destiny”. It creates accountability. And accountability fuels motivation. Motivation drives creativity. And creativity is the bread-and-butter-and-meat-and-potatoes-and-ice-cream-sundae-with-a-cherry-on-top that a true entrepreneur lives for.

It’s what I live for.

I love knowing that a glowing testimonial is the direct result of my time and effort.

I value the opportunity to make mistakes, learn from them and evolve into something better, without biting my nails over managerial disapproval.

I thrive under my own values and standards, because I am behind them 200%.

I enjoy the flexibility of working as inspiration strikes – whether that be 2 in the afternoon or 2 in the morning – rather than when the time clock demands.

I empower myself to make decisions and act on them.

I even appreciate the days when my heels are dragging because, in the process of questioning my sanity, I always wind up reaffirming my enthusiasm for what I’m doing… and dive right back in!

There is, of course, a reason I’m able to enjoy all of this… that reason is my clients. My clients will ALWAYS receive the highest standard of service from me and my business. Consistently exceptional work is what ensures and insures the future of DMT Artistry and the career and lifestyle I’ve chosen.

So banish the image of a couch potato selling “the next big thing” between Price Is Right episodes and hours-long gossipfests. That’s a hobbyist.

The true self-employed will be the ones who get visibly excited “talking shop”, who amass a die-hard following, whose businesses evolves daily, who keep popping up on your radar, who are just… driven.

“The meek shall inherit the earth”, my foot. If I were you, I’d put my money on the entrepreneurs.

Dawn M. Tomczyk  |  DMT Artistry LLC  |  810.923.4582  |  dawn@dmtartistry.com

 





Casual Conversation: A Weapon of Mass Destruction

30 03 2011

Loose lips can wreck your chances for successWe’re business owners. We’re proud of what we do. We stand behind our products and services.

How is it, then, that our own casual conversations can cause the utter annihilation of everything we’ve worked so hard to build?

The next time you’re having a light tête-à-tête, listen to what you’re saying (or not saying). Anything we say (or don’t say) can and will be used against us in the court of marketing. The most common conversational culprits are:

Griping – Outside of work, it’s occasionally therapeutic to gripe. There’s the employee whose performance is giving us heartburn, the contractor who has apparently fallen off the face of the planet, and the client who wants us to leap about like a trained monkey. This is okay to share with a family who loves us, but use extreme caution when sharing woes with others. You never know who is connected to whom and, if our conversation is all they have to go by, well then, our business must – pardon my English – suck.

Bad Mouthing – It’s a very small world. We are a very important representation of our business. Therefore, the class factor of our business is directly linked to our ability to take the high road. The temptation may be strong to bad mouth a wily competitor or difficult vendor. (Refer to “Negativity” above.) Don’t do it. We are better than that.

Too Much Information – If our elevator speech is more like an elevator lecture without intermissions, rein it back in. It’s awesome to see passion. It’s not awesome to be swallowed alive by a tidal wave of exuberance.

Too Little Information – Modesty may be a virtue but, in marketing, it’s also a total downer. If someone asks us what we do, let fly! Enthusiasm, intelligently moderated, translates to “Wow! They must have one heck of a product or service!”

Business is Bad – Our business is either a success, or it isn’t. In consumers’ minds, it’s that simple. We don’t want to be the one to tell them it’s not. Since the success of a business is directly linked to the perception of it’s success, avoid any “business is bad”, “economy is down” sort of talk. We’re still in business, aren’t we? That’s something to be proud of!

If you’ve chosen the life of an entrepreneur, way to go! You’re “living the dream”! Just be prepared to live like an entrepreneur any time you’re in public.

If a comment should be prefaced with a “please don’t take this as a representation of my business or my capability as a business person… ” then what on earth are you saying it for?

What are YOUR top recommendations for avoiding a “loose-lips-sink-ships” scenario?

“I wonder why we think faster than we speak. Probably so we can think twice.”  ~Bill Watterson, “Calvin & Hobbes”

Dawn M. Tomczyk  |  DMT Artistry, LLC  |  810.923.4582  |  dawn@dmtartistry.com