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The A-E-I-O-U’s of Success: Increase Your Opportunities for Future Success

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You can only successfully make the sound of a vowel, specifically the A, E, I, O, and U sounds, when the vocal path is unobstructed. That’s what I want to help you do with your career: open the pathway to success. Whether you’re at the bottom of the totem pole or have reached a plateau in your current role, implementing the A-E-I-O-U’s of success into your everyday work-life will increase your opportunities for professional growth.

A is for Ask

Ask if there is anything else you can help with. Ask how you’re doing on a project or with a certain skill. Ask to be included in a meeting. Ask for more training. Your superiors won’t know you’re hungry for growth and interested in being more involved unless you ask to be. Even if you’ve decided this isn’t the particular company you want to be with long-term, getting more involved and learning all you can where you are will increase your experience and ability to manage similar tasks or situations in future roles. 

“Successful people ask better questions, and as a result, they get better answers.” – Tony Robbins

E is for Extend

Oftentimes, competitive industries expect their workers to “go the extra mile” in order to just be considered competent. To really stand out, you must extend beyond what is expected of you. Don’t just complete the task in front of you, go out of your way to make sure it’s done better than anyone else around you could have done it. Do background research. Be more thorough than you think you need to be. Leave zero doubts in the minds of your subordinates and superiors that you are capable of efficiently and effectively getting the job done. Once people see how far you can go, everyone else will come up short. 

I is for Initiative

Take initiative! If you see a need that isn’t being met, go meet it or bring it to the attention of someone who can. So many people in the workforce are just waiting their turn, but you won’t get ahead if you don’t take action. Do things without having to be asked—even minor things. If you see trash on the ground on a worksite, pick it up and throw it away. Those little gestures make an impact on those who are paying attention.

Taking initiative requires having a thorough understanding of your role and how it fits into the larger picture. If you’re not sure what your boundaries are and how far you’re allowed to go with this one, refer back to the letter “A”—ask. Your boss will be pleased that you’re showing interest. 

O is for Offer

Make yourself available when needed. Do not discriminate between work-related projects. Open yourself up for every opportunity, not just the opportunities that you suspect will be successful or glamourous. When there is an opportunity to come in early and help set up for a work event—jump at it! Making yourself available for the seemingly less desirable shifts, in addition to the exciting ones, demonstrates your willingness to grow and your dedication to the company.

Remember that everything builds experience. Smaller projects often teach skills that will be useful or give insight into bigger projects down the road. If your hand is the one that keeps shooting up to volunteer, eventually management will just start looking in your direction when they need someone to take the lead.

U is for Update

Keep your supervisors in the loop. Newbies to the workforce are often advised to communicate laterally to best accomplish tasks and work effectively within a team or office environment, but upward communication is equally as important. Update superiors on what you’ve accomplished, don’t make them guess. If there are some stats on a project that you’re proud of, send off a quick quip to your boss: “I thought you would like to know that Project A was successful in gaining more leads for the sales team!” Those simple updates let them know how you are managing the work they’ve assigned and keep your progress at the forefront of their mind. Making management aware of your progress builds their trust in you as an employee and reminds them how efficient of a worker you are. 

”Spend eighty percent of your time focusing on the opportunities of tomorrow rather than the problems of yesterday.” – Brian Tracy

And sometimes Y, too

Y is for YOU! Don’t be afraid to be friendly and show some personality. People want to be able to relate to those they work with every day. Come out from under your cloak of invisibility and establish a presence in the office. Be personable and initiate casual conversations at the water cooler. By allowing your coworkers to get to know you, and putting in the effort to get to know them, you become more than just “Bob who sits in the corner,” you become a trusted ally. The people working right beside you could be some of your greatest, untapped resources in growing professionally and learning more about the business you’re in. Go grab a seat next to them in the lunchroom and get to know them—teamwork makes the dream work! 

Vowels are the pillars upon which the English language rests. If you include the letter “y,” every word in the English language contains at least one vowel. They are versatile; their function changes according to their pairings with other letters and depending on the context in which they are being used. If you removed every vowel, from every word in this text, you might still be able to understand it, but it would take you at least twice as long to get through. Similar to the presence of vowels in a word, the use of the A-E-I-O-U pillars will clarify your purpose at work and move you quickly along, down the road to success in your career.

Jenna M. Angelo is a California, Bay Area native who graduated with a dual degree from California State University, Chico, and worked in professional sports for six years before deciding to become a content writer for hire. She writes feature articles and web content, specializing in travel, sports, community, and self-improvement. Jenna enjoys indulging in good food, getting lost in a great story, and spending as much time as possible outdoors. She loves getting to know new people so stop by her website or her social page @jmacontent and say hello!

Success Advice

10 Tips to Deal With Negativity While Starting a Business

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There are ups and downs in business but fearing failures can stop you from taking your first step towards excellence. With pandemic on tow, aspiring entrepreneurs feel a little stuck when ideating a business prospect. Here, we give you some actionable tips to deal with negativity while starting a business, even during situations like a pandemic. We also took the liberty to throw in some amazing book recommendations that’ll help you enjoy the process of being positive and achieving your business goals.

10 Tips to deal with negativity while starting a business in a pandemic

1. Get a mentor

The first thing to do as a new business owner is to find the right kind of mentor. That person could be someone in your industry or in general who you look up to. The guidance must be apt for your business, and it should be a mutual responsibility of sharing knowledge. 

2. Two big R’s – Routine and Refresh

Made a mess of something? Try to reboot the situation and make it work. Take a break once in a while and refresh yourself if you feel stuck or your ideas feel mundane. Plan a routine and stick to them – both personal and professional. Having a routine can increase productivity and engage in more activities apart from your pre-planned schedule. 

3. Inculcate problem-solving mentality

Do not panic once you are thrown a problem. Arrange a meeting with the respective party, listen to both sides of the stories, and make a decision that is more realistic and feasible. 

4. Hire half and half

Whenever you hire someone for your business. Make sure that half of the people contradict your ideas, and the other half have the same mindset as yours. The people who contradict can bring in more valuable points and their perspective might take the discussion to a whole new level.  Don’t take too much time finding the perfect one. Hire an apt person who can have the right attitude. 

5. Network, Network, and Network

Find like-minded people and mingle with them. Be more sportive in the learning process. Listen more and talk less – if you are a beginner. You can only be a constructive person who gives input to someone if you have listened to everyone’s point of view. If you feel down, your network might have something to uplift your mood and change your perspective on something. 

“Negativity, in general, is one of the things that holds people back, and you have to see what’s holding you back to get away from it.” – Lucy Dacus

6. Tech-savvy personnel

Learn a thing or two about the latest technology that you implement in your organization. Since the world revolves around technology, make sure your administrative authority knows as well.  

7. Don’t schedule a meeting, that could have been an email

Yes! I said it. Having unnecessary meetings will weaken the purpose of having a constructive discussion. Having back-to-back meetings drains the team members and yourself too. Always have a 10 to 15 minutes break between each meeting to feel refreshed and give your 100%. 

8. Have a pros and cons list

Always, I mean always have a pros and cons list. Let’s say one of your team members pitch an idea to improve the marketing strategies starting next month. Jot down the pros and cons before approving or rejecting it point-blank. It’s a systematic way of making a decision. 

9. Track your finances

Even if you have a team of accountants and auditors, make sure that you are present (both mentally and physically) – learn if you are not aware of it. Trusting your employees is a must, but not overseeing the records is a mistake that should be avoided. 

10. Remember your “why?”

At some point in your hectic schedule or not having ME time can get to you. During those tough times – ask yourself – “Why am I doing this?”. If you can answer this question with a valid explanation, you’ll feel energized. Because “A purpose drives you”. 

5 Best books to read to be more positive as an entrepreneur

Reading always puts me into perspective. Therefore, I took some liberty to give a sample of positivity and determination through words. 

These are the 5 books that’ll guide you to be a more positive and successful entrepreneur. 

  1. Attitude is everything by Jeff Keller – The decisions you make, the routine you set for yourself, and the affirmations you say to yourself every day are going to make a huge difference. If you feel tired, hopeless, and quitting – then this book is for you to boost you up!
  2. Mindset: The new psychology of success by Carol Dweck – You do what you think. In this book, the author talks about two mindsets: The growth mindset and the fixed mindset and what they’ll do to you respectively. She helps you recognize your mindset and change it for the better. 
  3. Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton Christensen – This book is about technology uprisings all over the world and businesses that adopted and implemented technology in their firm. The author teaches you that just because your competitors and others are adopting something into their businesses doesn’t mean that you have to as well. Make an informed decision. 
  4. As A Man Thinketh by James Allen – This book specifically is about the power of thought and how it shapes your life into a more meaningful and fulfilling one.
  5. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle – The author talks about how people always keep thinking about what the future holds but then forget to live and enjoy the present. And also helps us understand how to make decisions more efficiently based on the present. 

Working towards inner balance requires consistency and perseverance. So does hard and smart work. Being negative is a part of our lives. It’s important to channel it appropriately and make things happen despite the roller coaster ride that is our lives. Hope you overcome your fears and negativity to shine bigger and brighter. Cheers! 

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Defining Your Own Success: A Step by Step Guide

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Everyone wants success in their lives, but success can be defined in so many different ways that it can sometimes seem daunting. In this blog post, you will learn how to make success easier for yourself by defining what success means to you. (more…)

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5 Characteristics of Athletes You Need for Business Success

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Michigan State basketball coach, Tom Izzo, wrote “Players play. Tough players win.” I would add to that, “It’s tough to win.”I think if you, as a leader, are looking to build an organization that is successful – that wins – you first have to accept that it will be tough. There are no shortcuts to success. In my 44 years of coaching, I was fortunate to coach a lot of tough players. I believe the toughness I have seen in athletes corresponds well to any organization or business. (more…)

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Success Advice

5 Changes in Your Habits That Will Help You Thrive

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We’ve all found ourselves at the bottom at least once in our lives. We thought that everything’s ruined and there’s no going back. The truth is – there’s always going back. Moreover, it takes one to fall many times and feel like everything’s ruined to succeed in life. (more…)

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