Feature Article: 7 Ways to Boost Your Creativity

Business Owner in the Spotlight
Walker Williams
Forté Human Resources


Refueling Recommendations
Make-it-Fly® Advisory Boards
Advisory Board Openings

Make-it-Fly® MarketPlace

Next Make-it-Fly® Café

ISSN# 1552-3705

January 19, 2010
Volume 7, Issue 02

"In-Flight Refueling" is published twice a month.

Click here to read archived newsletters.

A Note From Dave & Victoria


In addition to kicking off our 70th Advisory Board 101 next week, we’ve both been trying to get and keep in good shape physically. Apart from tennis, when the weather cooperates, we’ve both been walking miles each day. We gave each other pedometers for Christmas and now hold daily contests to see who can walk the most steps—the competition is fierce and fun!

Walking daily to get and keep in shape!

Part of the 'office farm'When she’s not walking, writing or working on Make-it-Fly projects, one of Victoria’s hobbies is growing sprouts—she has a small farm in her office that produces wonderful, healthy salads we enjoy daily.

We’re excited about the next Make-it-Fly Café on Thursday, February 25. We wanted a central location for everyone, so look forward to seeing you at The Wellshire Inn.

Our very best regards,

Dave and Victoria

P.S. Be sure to visit Victoria's blog and leave a comment or question.

Make-it-Fly Café - High Altitude Networking, where exceptional people help each other
Business Owner in the Spotlight

Walker Williams
Forté Human Resources

One of the headaches of small business ownership is trying to fulfill all roles in a company. One area that’s especially important and in need of an expert is human resources. Walker Williams gives these small business owners the perfect option: hiring an expert. “At Forte Human Resources,” he says, “we provide a turnkey, full-service outsourced human resources department for smaller companies, typically with 200 employees or fewer.”


Walker Williams of Forté Human Resources

Forté offers services like employment assistance, personnel policies and procedures, group benefits, human resource administration, training and development, wage and salary administration, employee relations, even employee safety/drug programs.

Founded in 1982, Forté Human Resources is based in Kirkland, Washington, and Walker opened the Lakewood office in September, 2000.

Q: What do you find most fulfilling about running your business?
WW: I am a very competitive person and starting this business in this market nine years ago and successfully growing it has been very fulfilling.

Q: What motivated you to start this business?
WW: I had spent 25+ years as the Senior HR Officer with five different organizations in five different industries, ranging in size from $80 million to $1.5 billion in sales and 400 to 35,000 employees. I was in my mid-50s, tired of working for other people and willing to take the risk of betting my future security on me vs. some of the people I had worked for during my career. Now I wish I had made this move 40 years ago.

Q: What book has been most helpful to you in your business?
WW: There are three that have affected me most: Moments of Truth by Jan Carlzon, Analyzing Performance Problems by Robert Mager and The Tao of Leadership by John Heider.

Q: Who has influenced you most in your life?
WW: My wife Scotta, Tom DeCotiis (a mentor) and Bill Marriott.

Q: What has proved to be your most successful marketing strategy?
WW: Some mix of group membership and the networking it provides, and Internet marketing.

Q: What have been the greatest challenges you have had to overcome, or are currently facing, in your business?
WW: The market has been and will continue to be the greatest challenge. This system has been in operation for over 27 years. The services we provide, the process that delivers the services and the staff I employ are all top notch. Getting ourselves known in ever-widening circles is the continuous challenge.

Q: How did you benefit from participating in a Make-it-Fly® board?
WW: My business has benefitted in almost every way through Make-it-Fly®. It has exposed me to other high-quality business owners and the opportunity to share successes and failures. I have garnered support for my company through direct leads, found high-quality service providers for my business and developed numerous lasting friendships.

Q: What would you say to other business owners who are contemplating getting involved in a Make-it-Fly® board?
WW: Being an entrepreneur can be an insecure and lonely trip. Given the opportunity to join this Colorado-based, values-driven, select organization of entrepreneurs, all of whom have been trained to understand that the best way to generate business for their company is to help others be successful, was a no-brainer for me. It has made me more secure knowing that I can access expertise and help from other members. If push came to shove, Make-it-Fly® members would be there with support.

Walker Williams can be reached by phone at: 720-497-0200, or visit his website at: www.ForteHumanResources .com.

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Dave Block, Co-Founder of Make-it-FlyDave’s Networking Nugget:

Be prepared. Find out as much as you can about the event and the type of people who typically attend. If you’re not familiar with the venue, check on the address and best route to get there. Be ready yourself with a very brief and intriguing ‘elevator pitch.’ Have a good supply of business cards on hand for when someone asks you for one.


Feature Article

Victoria Munro7 Ways to Boost Your Creativity
By Victoria Munro

“There is no doubt that creativity is the most important human resource of all. Without creativity, there would be no progress, and we would be forever repeating the same patterns.”
~ Edward de Bono

Entrepreneurship and creativity should go together. But it’s easy to get caught up in the daily routine of running a business and handling the related challenges. We can get stuck in a repetitive rut and forget to keep those creative juices flowing. In today’s competitive marketplace, it’s important to keep fanning that flame of creativity within.

Raising your creativity can increase profits, give your fresh motivation and make life and business more enjoyable. Even if you don’t think of yourself as a naturally creative person, you have imaginative, resourceful abilities inside just waiting to be ignited. Below are seven ways to boost your creativity:
1.

Input the right stuff. Be thoughtful about what you feed your mind. Make a point to read, watch and listen to creative, innovative, inspiring material. Visit a museum or art gallery, or go places you’ve never been before.

“Are you feeding your brain protein every day, or are you just giving it candy? Most Americans sustain their brains solely on candy—that is, useless television shows, news and gossip. Are you stimulating yourself with big ideas and new learning?” ~ Jim Rohn

2.

Take a day away to think. No phone, just you, a notebook and a pen. If a day, or even half a day a week, sounds like too much, start with an hour or two. During the week, make note of questions and ideas that come to mind, as well as problems and challenges you run into. Then use your think time to come up with innovative solutions. Keep a journal or notebook to record your thoughts.

Taking time out just to think may seem like a waste of time, and it’s not easy. Henry Ford said, “Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is the probable reason why so few people engage in it.”

3.

Be ready to capture creative ideas. Always carry a notebook and pen. You never know when you might have a brilliant idea or hear something you’d like to further explore. Write it down quickly; don’t lose it.

Leonardo da Vinci was famous for keeping a journal of his ideas. Today, those notebooks containing his creative ideas, drawings, scientific diagrams and genius thoughts are priceless.

4. Exercise your brain—train your mind to think, question and evaluate. Commit to learn something new this year. Take a class. Try something you’ve never done before. Do crossword or Sudoku puzzles. Welcome and ponder ridiculous, off-the-wall ideas rather than judging them. When approaching problems, try to think of solutions that are unique or different.
5. Ask questions. Become curious about the world around you. Stop occasionally, look around and ask why? How? And what if…? Talk to people—perhaps people you wouldn’t normally connect with, ask searching questions, listen attentively and learn from them. Read some books in a totally different genre from your usual fare.
6. View problems as opportunities to be creative. When challenges arise that weren’t in your game plan, see them as possibilities in disguise. After taking his dog for a hike, Velcro® inventor, George de Mestral, returned home covered with burrs. Intrigued, he inspected one of the many burrs in his microscope and saw thousands of tiny hooks that caused it to cling to the loops in the fabric of his pants. As a result, he designed the well-known two-sided fastener—one side with stiff hooks like the burrs and the other side with soft loops.
7. Believe that you are creative. Think of yourself as a creative person. Webster’s Dictionary defines creativity as creative ability or intellectual inventiveness. We all possess this to some extent and we can all improve our ability to create. Becoming more creative will take determination and practice, but the results will be worthwhile and rewarding.

Click here for printed version.

To read more, check out Victoria's Blog.

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Victoria’s Time / Balance Tip

Too Much to Do?
When you feel overwhelmed with too many tasks, evaluate each one by asking the following questions:
Eliminate – Is this task really necessary? Could it simply be a habit?
Automate – Is there any way to automate this?
Delegate – Can I get someone else to do this so I can devote my time to more profitable work—what I do best and enjoy most?
Create a system – Can we create a system to accomplish this more efficiently and effectively?

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Make-it-Fly Marketplace

Sharpen Your Speaking Skills this Year
at a Presentation Dojo

You worked hard on your presentation and afterward several people came up to compliment you on it. You think, “That’s nice, but I didn’t get any business.” If you want to grow your business through public speaking, enroll in the Presentation Dojo.

Jay Murray of Solutions for Tuition says, “Before working with Turning Point Presentations, 3% of my audience members typically requested appointments to learn more. Now, it’s over 50% and my business is thriving.

Angela Libby Jankousky

Angela Libby Jankousky



Rev NetworkingRev Networking

Up to 20 professionals, each representing one profession, meet one on one at customized speed networking events, allowing you the opportunity to have a five-minute conversation with each participant to generate leads, referrals and business. Rev Networking is not a group, as you will meet new professionals every time and people that attend are serious about growing their business by networking and power partnering with other professionals.

Reservation only $68
Marilyn Manning 303-763-1865

marilyn@revnetworking.com
www.revnetworking.com

 

READING THIS AD? THEN WHY NOT PUT YOURS HERE TOO? The In-Flight Refueling Ezine reaches more than 3,000 entrepreneurs, small-biz owners, consultants and marketers. Reserve your advertising spot today in the next In-Flight Refueling Ezine,
http://www.make-it-fly.com/ezineads.html.

Paid Advertising Disclaimer: Make-it-Fly® LLC does not represent or endorse the accuracy or reliability of any of the paid advertisements above or the quality of any products, services, information, or other materials displayed, purchased, or obtained by you as a result of an offer in connection with any ad. It's common sense to do your own due diligence before purchasing any product.

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Refueling Recommendations

The Make-it-Fly® Advisory Board 101

Each Make-it-Fly® Advisory Board 101 program consists of 8-10 non-competing business owners who meet once a month for five consecutive months. In the spirit of giving, they offer each other solutions, ideas, resources and encouragement. Dave and Victoria facilitate each group and share powerful tools to assist business owners in reaching their goals and living more balanced lives.

If you have experienced a Make-it-Fly® Advisory Board, please share the following openings with other business owners who need support. Call Dave for more information at 720-962-8888.

Programs are held from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Next Advisory Board 101 in Denver:

  • Thursdays - January 28, February 25, March 25, April 22, May 20, June 17
  • Mondays - March 1, April 5, May 3, June 7, July 6*, August 2
  • Wednesdays - March 31, April 28, May 26, June 30, July 28, August 25
    *Tuesday

Click here to sign up for an Advisory Board.
Or call Dave at 720-962-8888.

Alumni Boards are groups of 12-14 small business owners who have participated in at least one Make-it-Fly® Advisory Board 101 and wish to continue the support and accountability with a group of like-minded, giving business associates. Members meet once a month for a three-hour meeting. If you completed the initial Make-it-Fly® Advisory Board 101 and are interested in more information on Alumni Boards, call Dave at 720-962-8888.

Make-it-Fly Café - High Altitude Networking, where exceptional people help each otherNext Café:

Date: Thursday, February 25, 2010

Time: 4:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Cost: $10 online, $15 at the door

Location: The Wellshire Inn
3333 South Colorado Blvd., Denver, CO 80222

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Contact Make-it-Fly® - Dave and Victoria:

Email: info@make-it-fly.com
Voice: 720-962-8888
Web: www.Make-it-Fly.com

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Please email or call Victoria if you'd like to reprint any information contained in this newsletter. Thanks! © Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.

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Make-it-Fly® LLC
720-962-8888
355 South Teller Street, Suite 200, Lakewood, CO 80226, USA
http://www.make-it-fly.com