Did you notice that Jane was MIA for a few days, dear readers??
Life, that rude, insistent child, has been demanding more and more of our time. We are delighted to be so busy, and having so much to do brings a measure of reflection to our lives. Naturally, the season begs reflection - a thoughtful review of the past year; of goals met and goals left by the wayside, in the shuffle of a worn deck of cards.
At WME Books, our main business, we've achieved many of the goals we set for ourselves, and found ourselves wanting in others. Our success was accomplished via the hard work of the WME Books team, which can be found here. One team-member is missing...our recently added Admin, Carla, a beautiful young woman who is too shy to have her picture taken (but we will catch her unaware in 2006, we promise.)
This fine Monday morning, Jane wonders if you've taken time to reflect on YOUR team? Where is your business today - is it on track for 2006, or did you have some unexpected struggles that kept you running in place? Has the economy - the rise in gas prices - given you heartburn, or worse, impacted your company's bottomline in a negative manner? Are you among the strong - those folks who shake their fists at Fate and perservere? Or, are you wringing your hands and cursing the darkness - when there is light just outside your window?
At Lip-sticking, we believe in the 'give to get' principle, that being ZigZiglar's "the more you help others succeed, the more successful you will become." That's why our team is so important to us. Their success is our success. Their hopes for the future become our hopes for the future. Their goals become our goals. We must credit the Fortune Innovation Forum for reminding us that leaders lead by example, not by blame. And, that work should be play.
Can you say the same, dear readers? Are your workers or partners or teammates happy in what they do? Are you encouraging creativity - offering free time to daydream, during the regular workday? Are you sponsoring contests to get workers thinking about next year- where the 'prize' is a day off or a weekend at a spa or tickets to the 'big game'? Over at MIT, Professor Von Hippel says the consumer is your best bet when it comes to innovation; he calls it 'Democratizing Innovation' and he has written a book (free download) on it.
Are you learning to embrace this concept - challenging though it may be? When your own customers take your products and craft them into something more suited to their needs - they essentially become unpaid workers - offering YOU an opportunity to capitalize on their creative results. Are you complimenting them for that? Are you creating customer evangelists of them?
Jane wonders how many of you will still be blogging at the end of 2006? We are here for the long haul. Thought we are planning to make some changes - to become more relevant - to engage more voices - to be nonsensical - even a little mysterious - at times.
As the blogoshpere grows and continues to support the cacaphony of loud voices it has become this year- as the platform we call the blogosphere changes, in subtle and not so subtle ways, over the next year - Jane will be watching and recording, and noting how many women's voices are making themselves heard. We are especially interested in business partnerships - those unlikely matings of men and women, Moms and Dads, college students and business professionals, and... of the baby boomers who shuck the chains of corporate America to become entrepreneurs, promisng the next big idea or the next really wild product.
We hope these energetic, innovative, creative folks...full of hope and expectation...will tune in and offer their comments. We believe the world is waiting for them; waiting, perhaps, for YOU. Are you ready?
Now, before we sign off...we encourage you to visit the Carnival of the Capitalists today, over at Coyote Blog. And, after that, check out the ThirdAge Carnival over at The Hip and Zen Pen. Bookmark these Carnvials - they offer some of the best online reading (and advice) FOR FREE - that you will ever receive. We will be watching blog Carnivals carefully in 2006 - watching to see what becomes of them.
Jane says, "There is nothing not to like about that!"