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Ben's Tips

Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: Real-Time Takeaways

Ben recently traveled to Malta for an association meeting where he learned an easy way to give attendees real-time takeaways.

Video transcript available below:

I’m here at an ECMA (European Carton Makers Association) meeting in Malta, and I saw something that I haven’t seen before.

While each speaker was speaking, someone took down all of the things that they said and they put them on oversized sheets of paper. At our meetings, we always ask the speakers, “Tell us one thing I should go home with from your talk.” Now here, in addition to having slides, meeting attendees actually have the gist of what the person has said.

I think it’s really good practice and we’re going to try it. Let me know what you think.

Good luck! Work on your business. Stay in touch.

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Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: Red Gate

Before winter swoops in, Ben takes us back to one of his favorite memories this Summer. Learn how our team works to inspire the next generation and build community in this week’s tip.

Video transcript available below:

I’m here at the Red Gate Farm in Buckland, Massachusetts. It’s a place where young people come, typically from the inner city to a farm where they learn really important things about farming and doing chores and being independent. These activities help students learn about kindness and respect.

This particular group of fifth and sixth graders went back to town in Springfield, MA, we think, changed. This is one of the organizations that we like to support because it’s really important to us that we support activities where folks really get to learn about themselves, learn about nature, and become better members of the community.

I’m interested to know what organizations you support. Good luck. Work on your business. Stay in touch.

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Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: Staff NSYNC?

Don’t go tearin’ up any hearts. Ben shares 3 quick questions he asks at the start of strategic planning sessions to see if staff are in sync. Learn more about establishing goal congruence in this week’s tip:

Video transcript available below:

I’m honored to be able to facilitate strategic planning with organizations of all sizes. When working with staff members, one little tip I use to see how much the group is in sync is by asking three pretty simple questions:

How big are we going to be this year? That’s either in dollars of revenue or number of members.

How big are we going to be next year?

How big are we going to be in five years?

The more different their answers are at the five-year mark (and sometimes I see huge swings) identifies they haven’t had any of these conversations. This information helps me direct them, and then they feel really good at the end of a fairly short session because they’re now able to have a lot more goal congruence about where they’re headed.

Let me know how it works for you. Good luck. Work on your business, stay in touch.

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Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: Lessons From My Dog

Ben shares 3 things he’s learned from having a dog. Stay tuned for Ben’s bonus tip at the end!

Video transcript available below:

Mac, our border collie, is one-year-old today, and I thought I’d do a tip about what I’ve learned from having a dog in our family. First of all, I didn’t have a dog [when I was young] and I didn’t know I was a dog person until I was in my thirties. Beth, our daughter, really begged to have a dog. For two years, she had an imaginary dog that we had to walk every day. We learned it was a lot easier to actually walk a real dog.

What I’ve learned from Mac and from his predecessors in our family is this thing that I wish I could be better at – unconditional acceptance. He is always happy to see me, and he has incredible patience. He can stare at a ball for hours, well, certainly for tens of minutes, and sort of try to levitate the ball into my hand so that I will throw it for him and play with him, and then he brings it back immediately.

Lastly, Mac just wants to be part of the team. Whatever we’re doing, he’d like to be part of the team and be part of the family. If you’re a dog person, you know that when you come home, whether you’ve had a great day or a bad day, your dog always makes you feel better.

Here’s a bonus tip from Mac and me. Mac and I were out on a walk the other day and this cat came over and the cat looked at Mac and said, “Well, you know, in ancient Egypt I was considered a God and they built statues of me and they worshiped me.” Mac thought for a minute, he looked at the cat and he said, “Well, you know, I’m a very good boy.” Good luck, work on your business. Happy birthday, Mac.

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Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: 3 Ways to Motivate Volunteers

Managing trade associations and professional organizations has taught us 3 keys to help motivate and engage volunteers.

Video transcript available below:

I was interested to read a blog that Tessa O’Sullivan, one of our Senior Account Managers, wrote. You can find it here.

Tessa’s blog describes 3 ways on how to help motivate volunteers. Tessa says to ignite their passion, respect their time, and communicate personally so that you’re talking to them and they’re talking to you. This applies to what we do, managing trade associations and professional organizations. But this also works very well anywhere you might be.

Let me know what you think. Good luck. Work on your business. Stay in touch.

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Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: Change Hearts & Minds

When trying to lead change, remember WIIFM.

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Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: You Decide!

Ben shares how he empowers his team to get results using four decision levels.

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Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: Maximize Your Next Board Meeting

Ben shares 4 ways to help lead effective Board meetings from his experience sitting on both sides of the [Board] table.

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Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: Show Up

Ben shares how you can be a better leader by showing up as yourself every day.

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Video Transcript Available Below:

My coach Michelle says that you show up as yourself every day whether you want to or not.

What that means to me as a leader is if I want to talk to the team about our culture, or about our values, I have to live those. If I don’t show up as myself, as those values, then my team won’t think those values are worth anything at all. You know, in life we all look for authenticity whether it’s in the person who we work for, the leader of our town, or the president of the United States.

Show up as yourself every day; think about what that is, and think about how you influence others.

Good luck. Work on your business.

Stay in touch!

 

Ben’s Video Tip of the Week: Secret Strategy

Ben shares why strategy shouldn’t be a secret and how to leverage it to lead your team.

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Video Transcript Available Below:

So one of the mistakes I see too often is that organizations keep their strategy a secret. They spend a lot of time and effort in developing a strategy and making decisions, but they keep that strategy in a pretty tight circle of senior leaders. While it’s interesting, it’s a lot more helpful if everybody on your team knows where you’re going and can all be helping to pull in the same direction.

Team members, every day, take actions to make things happen. If those actions are in line with the strategy, it’s great for the organization.

Think about it and if you’ve done strategy recently and not everybody knows, please let them know. Good luck. Work on your business. Stay in touch.