Entrepreneurship Corner: Today’s Tip – Start With a Vision

Vision is defined as: the act or power of anticipating that which will or may come to be.

You need to see it before you can be it. You will not get others to believe in what you are trying to accomplish unless you believe in it with every fiber of your being. Your vision statement shows everyone exactly what you want to achieve. It is a guide for choosing your course of action. Vision statement – What will the company look like if the mission is accomplished? What your company will be in the future? Brainstorm words that speak to your company – its success.

Okay, you say, I know what I want to do… kinda… but how do I get other people to understand and help me with it. Be able to explain your vision. Close your eyes and imagine what the world will look like when you accomplish your mission. Let’s say that your idea is to eliminate homelessness. When you close your eyes, you see your team helping people get placement into shelters, getting their GEDs, starting jobs, and moving into their own places. Beautiful right? Well, you need to find a way to communicate that feeling to others. The best thing about it is – you can choose what they see. If you find the perfect wording to express your feelings, great! Put it down – everywhere! Quote it out loud all the time. Find people that want exactly what you want and find ways to work with them. They may be able to help you get to your destination. Or maybe your vision statement is a picture of a man literally moving from homeless to homeowner. Pictures are worth a thousand words.

All I’m really saying is, get your vision down and share it. That is the beginning to your success…

What Should Really Be On the 2016 Presidential Agenda?

Campaign Time…

Yes, it is that time again… the campaigns, the commercials, the appearances on popular talk shows, the rhetoric – all in hopes of getting the voters to trust, believe, and follow this or that candidate to the next presidency. How many times must the same promises be spoken? “The economy, foreign affairs, and taxes will all be first and foremost on my agenda!” These things have been on the top of the agenda for a couple of hundred years now and, honestly, how many times have any of these things changed for the advancement of America? Once, twice… maybe three times. What would the people really want to hear about? Moreover, what would the people really want our leaders to actually do something about?   election

American Plagues?

Think about that… what would the average American citizen want changed in order to make their lives and their country the best that it could possibly be? What plagues could be eradicated: Gun violence, brutality, illness, war, the rising costs of… everything? Wouldn’t it be absolutely thrilling to hear the leaders say enough is enough to all of these senseless murders and mass shootings? How great would it be to hear someone show and prove that all men are created equal, so every person in this country will get the same treatment or those that do not show fair and equitable treatment will be punished? Wouldn’t it be amazing to hear that this country is on the forefront of finding cures to cancer, HIV, and heart disease… and everyone is eligible to receive the groundbreaking treatments? Who would be overjoyed to find out that their loved ones are coming home from every war torn county? How awesome would it be to actually be able to pay all of the bills at the beginning of the month and still be able to put away money for the kids’ college funds and retirement? If these things came to fruition, wouldn’t that allow people to relax and enjoy their lives in this country?

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Build Pride in America Again

With all that is going on in the United States, are the people really proud to be American right now? Almost every other nation in the world used to watch the U.S. to see what the latest, greatest trends were going to be and how to keep up. Is that the case now or is America watching other countries? It used to be real pride when citizens saw the United States flag anywhere, but now with the infighting about the confederate flag and what it really represents – does it matter? The American economy is in such turmoil that the dollar is not nearly worth as much as it was twenty years ago. Immigrants used to do whatever it took to get to these shores, because they believed that it meant a better life for them and their families. Now, they may get killed and/or turned around as soon as they touch American soil. The “Great melting pot” was a phrase that made people proud! America was rich in culture, diversity, respect and kindness to all people from everywhere. The idea made this land great! These days the same people are seemingly unwanted, detriments that will only cause more trouble.

 

What American Citizens Truly Care About

Many of the constituents really want to hear about somebody in leadership making real change in their own daily lives. They want to know that their paychecks will be enough to pay the bills and take care of their families. Yes, that does have a lot to do with the economy, but why are the solutions always in the Top-Down approach? Does it really help the guy that makes $40,000 a year if the federal government helps bail out the banking industry? The same organizations that won’t give him a loan to buy a home or even get himself out of debt – why would he care? Does it really make a difference to him what the stock market looks like? He is not able to invest – hell, he can barely save enough to buy his kids Christmas gifts! What would happen if this same guy was able to pay his mortgage, car note, insurance, gas, lights, water, cable, internet, grocery, child care, personal expenses and still save? Wouldn’t he, or rather his wife, shop more? Wouldn’t that give the businesses a boost, which would in turn, boost the economy? Not to mention the ones that only make half of that… how grateful would they be for a hand up?

People continually say that the road to success begins with a good education. Well, does that happen in America anymore? Do public schools offer a good education anymore? Especially to the groups that need it most – the poorest communities… don’t they need that great education even more? How can they ever get out of poverty if they start out on the road to success and the roadblocks are insurmountable? Then, if they do scratch and claw to graduate high school, how can they possibly afford college? Please don’t say that the Pell grants should kick in at this point. They do and it is appreciated, but the universities raise tuition every single year. These kids MUST take loans immediately just to get into school in their freshman year! Funny how the leaders want to put the brakes on the grants now that they have finished school and have great jobs. What about everyone else?

 

Bottom line – these politicians are so far removed from what it takes to actually survive in America, let alone attempt to achieve the American Dream, that they have no idea what to do to improve circumstances for the “ordinary” people! When will a regular person run for President? Maybe, just maybe, then there will be some REAL CHANGE!

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Writing Workshop: Sources of Fiction

Okay, so chapter 1 is all about sources for your stories and it describes several successful methods to try until you find the one that is right for you.

After reading the chapter, there are short exercises used to try out what you just read. Exercise #1 says write a scene of a story from a glimpse of a group of people that you have encountered. So, here goes…

Orientation:  There were 10 of us in the small storage room/conference room, in the back of the building. We were sitting there waiting to begin our new journey. The group is mostly young men (kids, I thought) that looked like freshmen in college. Most of them average white guys and I think their fathers must have said, “Son, I worked my way up to the level that I have reached. You, too, will need to learn the value of hard work. I will not pay one red cent toward your education if you do not have a part time job!” Then, they figured why not work at a computer store – that will be easy since that’s all they do anyway – play on the computer. Mostly, the same thoughts on the young women or maybe I just watch too much t.v. But, anyway, then there is me and two others that should be well established in careers by now and in no way sitting here waiting to get a part-time, seasonal job, just to earn enough money to keep the lights and gas on at home. So, the older guy just got out of rehab for the third time and might be drunk right now, but a gig is part of the parole requirements. He used to run a company twice the size of this one and made more money that everybody in the building. Yeah, well, that was before the incident. And lastly, the other older woman – she looked tired, worn out, and enthusiastic at the same time. She’d finally broken free of him and today she starts her personal journey to freedom.

Okay, did you take the journey around the room with me? Can you visualize the people? Do you know what they might sound like? I don’t know, I give myself about a C+ on this one… what about you?