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Three reasons why we should never stop learning

We begin our formal education at the age of four or five years old and continue until we finish senior school or college/university. Then, once we achieve our qualifications, we tend to believe that the “learning” part of our life is over and we begin our working life – of course we learn at work but it’s reactive learning that takes place, not proactive learning. Proactive learning is about exploration, development and expanding the breadth and depth of your knowledge.

There is a one particular excuse we hear time and time again: “I don’t have time.” But take a closer look at your time; your commute to work could be 10 or 20 minutes of ‘dead time.’ This time could be used to learn by listening to podcasts or audiobooks, or using apps like Blinkist which provides 10-15 minute book summaries.

Get into the habit of investing in learning and improving yourself during dead time. Here are the top three benefits of continued learning:

Opens up new opportunities

Taking the time to proactively learn will give you a better understanding of the events around you. By progressively deepening your understanding and knowledge of subjects that matter to you, you will be able to see the bigger picture. Those moments of clarity where something finally becomes clear or makes sense will become more frequent.

The more you learn, the more you’ll be able to make connections between pieces of knowledge. Look at each new learning and apply it to your own experiences, you will then begin to see and take advantage of new opportunities that you didn’t see before.

Fast track to success

Listening, learning and developing is what successful people do. But why do they do it? Well, if you believe that you know everything you need to know about a subject matter or running a business or managing your team, then you will be missing out on new ideas and different ways of thinking.

Jim Rohn, American entrepreneur and author, once said: “Work harder on yourself than you do on your job.” By this he means that learning and developing will increase your personal value and give you the right mindset for success.

Improves creativity

It’s a well-known fact that learning and staying mentally active keeps your brain healthy and functioning at a high level. Scientists believe that creativity is essentially the ability to apply skills or learning from one situation and apply them to another. If you’re always learning you will be able to transfer your knowledge and understanding to new challenges and ‘come up with’ creative solutions.

Let us know what's on your ‘to read' list.

 

For more on this topic, listen to Episode 085 of the Fluid Business Podcast.

Read more on The Levels Blog: How do you change the way you think?

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Never answer your phone in meetings: Here’s why…

Written by Hugo Heij

It's easy to overlook the importance of meeting etiquette and how seemingly harmless actions can have a bigger impact on those around you.

Have you ever phoned someone, and they answered the phone whispering if they can call you back because they are in a meeting? (Or do you recognise yourself in this? -> Read on!)

When this happens a few major errors in judgement are taking place. And I know, these are big words, so let me explain them to you.

Error #1:

By answering the phone, you lost connection with the person or people you are meeting with. You have made the conscious choice that answering the phone was more important than paying attention. This does not pay much respect to the people you are meeting with.

Error #2:

By answering the phone, you delayed the meeting, and you forced the other participants to spend more time in the meeting, because the meeting rhythm has been disturbed. Hijacking other people’s time. Ouch!

Error #3:

The fact you know someone was calling, meant you had it either ringing (oops, sorry. Forgot to put in on silent), or buzzing on the table (yes, other people do notice that and it distracts), or flashing in front of you (that is also being noticed!) or your smartwatch has notified you (congratulations with your new gadget). Whatever triggered you to answer the phone, meant that the meeting has been distracted and your call has prevailed over the bigger cause you are meeting for. What is your priority?

Error #4:

By answering the phone, you have given your caller the initial joy you answered, for it to be followed by a short question, ‘Can I call you back?’ This does not pay much respect to the person calling you either.

Error #5:

By answering the phone, you have robbed me from the opportunity to leave you a message or question, so you can think about the answer, before ringing back. This could potentially have saved us both time. Thanks!

Solution:

When you are meeting somebody, please switch off your phone, or leave it in the car or in your bag. If I call you in that moment, I am absolutely fine to leave you a message or for you to call me back at your own leisure. I won’t be upset, feel left out, or think I am being ignored.

Please pay respect to those you are meeting with. Give them your full and undivided attention. They deserve it, and it will save you time!

And if you are expecting that extremely important phone call; notify the meeting in advance. We all have those phone calls from time to time.

Vice Versa

If you call me and you get my voicemail, please don’t take it personally. It’s not that you are not important. It’s not because I don’t want to speak to you. It’s not that I am ignoring you.

It’s simply, because I choose, at that moment, to give my full attention, to the person I am meeting with. And yes, that is sometimes myself.  Just leave me a short message, and I will call you back.

 

In Episode 081 of the Fluid Business Podcast, Hugo Heij discusses meeting etiquette in more depth with Andy Sleet.

Related podcasts:
FBP 022: Meeting rhythms
FBP 065: Rules of a team meeting

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FBP 080: Banish negativity in three simple steps

In life we often meet negative people. But negativity amongst employees in the workplace can spread and often leads to a demotivated team. On this episode of the Fluid Business Podcast, Ray Moore and Hugo Heij discuss the three steps to banishing negativity from the workplace.

Read more on this week's blog.

Our team of professional business coaches share their expert knowledge and experience every single week, empowering you, the business owner, to develop and grow your business the right way.

Join us as we cover core subjects areas in our unique and relaxed way, including: Rapid Growth, Family Business, Team, Efficiency and so much more.

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FBP 077: Are Your Systems Holding You Back?

In this episode of the Fluid Business Podcast Andy Sleet and Ray Moore discuss the internal and external influences on your business’s systems. The emergence of new technology accelerates the pace of change. But, have you considered how internal systems could be holding your business back?

Our team of professional business coaches share their expert knowledge and experience every single week, empowering you, the business owner, to develop and grow your business the right way.

Join us as we cover core subjects areas in our unique and relaxed way, including: Rapid Growth, Family Business, Team, Efficiency and so much more.

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FBP 064: The Structure of Business with Andy Sleet

 

In episode 064 of the Fluid Business Podcast Andy Sleet discusses the structure of business. Do you struggle with enough hours in the day? Listen to this episode to find out what you could be doing differently.

 

Special Announcement – the Fluid Business Podcast is going on a short hiatus whilst we are working on something exciting to bring to you. We will be back with you shortly.

 

 

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FBP 062: Who Are the Keepers of Your Culture?

Have you ever worked with companies where you walked into the reception and they had these words behind the desk; words like trust, respect, integrity, or maybe in their brochures or on the website?

Then when you started working with them you were wondering, “What do these words mean?” Because none of the actions that the companies were doing in the relationship with you showed those values.

Maybe your company is the same?

Maybe years ago you came up with some culture points for your company. Maybe you did a core value exercise and now years on, maybe you don't feel like it anymore.

That means that your actions are not aligned with the words that you have on your website, with the words that you have in your brochure. That means that the people are going to see something different from what you want them to see, which means you are not aligned with your own values.

How do you deal with this?

Well, there's a couple of things that you need to be absolutely clear about;

The first step is, of course, to review those values from time to time; are your actions aligned with the culture, with the values, with the rules of the game?

First of all, you need to find out if you still believe in those rules, in those values because you didn't even come up with them.

Maybe you thought that you needed to have those because you read it in a book!

First of all, you need to revisit from time to time to establish if those values are actually describing you because only then your actions can be aligned with what you say they are.

Over the years, as a business coach, I have worked with many companies just addressing this issue.

I worked with a managing director, a business owner and he clearly was not aligned with the core values that he once came up with.

When we did the exercise to find out what really rocked his boat, what really drove him, we got those values clear and it was much easier for him to align his actions with those values.

What we saw was that in the rest of the company people started to believe in those values.

  • That was what they could sign up to.
  • That was what they could buy into.
  • The atmosphere in the company got much better.

Productivity went up and eventually, of course, that led to improved profitability.

I am sure that you can relate to this in your business and I can assure you that problem will not go away by itself, so if you want some help overcoming this problem, become productive and get more profitable, book in a free 1-hour coaching call and see how we can help you to overcome this problem.

To your success!

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FBP 055: Scaling Up – Strategy with Peter Boolkah

 

Episode 055 is the second part in a 4-part series with Peter Boolkah where we are covering the 4 major decisions every business must get right, according to the popular business book Scaling Up by Verne Harnish. This episode covers strategy. Click here for part three – Execution decisions.

Our team of professional business coaches share their expert knowledge and experience every single week, empowering you, the business owner, to develop and grow your business the right way.

Join us as we cover core subjects areas in our unique and relaxed way, including: Rapid Growth, Family Business, Team, Efficiency and so much more.

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FBP 054: Scaling Up – People with Peter Boolkah

Episode 054 of the Fluid Business Podcast follows on from two previous podcasts with Peter Boolkah: 043 What are the Rockefeller Habits? and 052 Scaling Up – The 4 D's.

In this episode Peter delves into the 1st decision business owners must get right, and that is people. The next decision is Strategy, click here.

Our team of professional business coaches share their expert knowledge and experience every single week, empowering you, the business owner, to develop and grow your business the right way.

Join us as we cover core subjects areas in our unique and relaxed way, including: Rapid Growth, Family Business, Team, Efficiency and so much more.

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FBP 053: The 4 Behaviours Seen When Forming a Team

In episode 53 of the Fluid Business Podcast David takes a look at four behaviours seen when forming a team. Fluid founder and business coach, Ray Moore, inspired this episode from his recent article on the Levels Blog.

Recently, during a business coaching session, Ray was reminded by a client of four common responses he encountered to a business challenge. Over the years he has encountered similar experiences voiced by countless business owners when building a strong, resilient team.

Our team of professional business coaches share their expert knowledge and experience every single week, empowering you, the business owner, to develop and grow your business the right way.

Join us as we cover core subjects areas in our unique and relaxed way, including: Rapid Growth, Family Business, Team, Efficiency and so much more.

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FBP 050: The Levels Mindset – Leader/Owner with Ray Moore

 

In this episode of the Fluid Business Podcast, our final in the Levels Mindset series we look at the mindset of Leaders and Owners, taken from The Levels Can You Step Up to the Growth Challenge by Ray Moore.

 

Our team of professional business coaches share their expert knowledge and experience every single week, empowering you, the business owner, to develop and grow your business the right way.

 

Join us as we cover core subjects areas in our unique and relaxed way, including: Rapid Growth, Family Business, Team, Efficiency and so much more.